The Gargett truck broke down during fires at Netherdale last week.
The Gargett truck broke down during fires at Netherdale last week. CONTRIBUTED

Fighting fires 'as hard on gear as it is on people'

MECHANICS have been working behind the scenes to maintain crucial firefighting vehicles on the front line.

As intense fires ripped though the upper Pioneer Valley and the Sarina Range, mechanics have worked tirelessly to keep vehicles running in the extreme conditions.

Mackay region mechanics, as well as four Brisbane-based mechanics, were based in Beaconsfield and at the Finch Hatton fire fronts yesterday, maintaining Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES), Rural Fire Service and privately owned vehicles.

At the Mackay Incident Control Centre, a QFES spokesman described the mechanics as "overalled angels".

He said repair crews were "giving their heart and souls to keep (vehicles) going".

However despite the best efforts of mechanics, breakdowns occur "just about every single day," he said.

Last week, the Gargett Rural Fire Brigade truck broke down in Netherdale after a tree branch pierced its radiator.

Rural Fire Service acting regional manager (central) Andrew Houley said "that stuff happens in fires."

"It's as hard on gear as it is on people"