Firefighters avoiding lakeside park after harrassment

The Irrewarra Fire Brigade says it can no longer police illegal campfires at a popular campground after unhappy campers stalked and harassed firefighters.

The Irrewarra Fire Brigade says it can no longer police illegal campfires at a popular campground after unhappy campers stalked and harassed firefighters.

Brigade captain John Martin said campers at Meredith Park beside Lake Colac at Irrewarra ignored signs and lit fires outside of designated areas, and that some campers reacted badly when asked to douse them.

“Campfires are a continual problem at Meredith Park,” he said.

“People will basically stand you up and give you a hard time and say ‘no we are not putting it out’.

“We have been abused before, and on a number of occasions they have followed the tanker back to the station, where they will see what your private vehicle number is and give you a hard time.

“At the end of the day we are only volunteers and we don’t want all the hassles involved – so now, unless it’s a total fire ban day or a fire is a direct threat to property or life, the Irrewarra Fire Brigade will leave it to local laws to go and deal with the campers directly.”

Mr Martin said that more signs would fail to stop the problem of illegal fires at Meredith Park.

See Today’s Colac Herald for more.

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2 Responses to “Firefighters avoiding lakeside park after harrassment”

  1. John

    where are the Police? If I were to do a burn off on my property you can bet that I would be charged with lighting an illegal fire, then I would be hauled before the courts and charged, why didn’t the fire brigade get police involved? and I think it is about time that the local council started charging these people to camp here! There are so many people there all from out of town just taking advantage of this free camping site, when the lake was full we went there to swim and the whole place was full of out of towners who all had fishing lines in the place where you could swim we then ended up going to go to Lorne. Start Charge them to camp there!

  2. Ken

    This story is cause for concern. We have camped at Meredith Park several times over the years. Most people appreciate what is on offer there, abide by the rules and spend money in the area. There are also those who have nothing but contempt for fellow campers and rules. Regular patrols and enforcement by Police and Council By Laws Officers may deter those types. A $10 or $20 per night fee to camp there would not be unreasonable.