Town’s Fire Siren To Be Reinstated

The North Canterbury community of Oxford is celebrating a win for common sense with the reinstatement of its fire siren.

A petition was started on October 20 after a member of the public posted on social media about the siren being stopped.

While Fire and Emergency New Zealand (Fenz) said it was not stopping the siren altogether, it had already added a three-minute delay at night to minimise disruption to residents.

If volunteers did not get to the fire station within three minutes of receiving pager and cellphone alerts, the siren would then go off.

Oxford residents opposed the change and gathered nearly 1000 signatures – almost half of the town’s population of 2200 – last week to get the siren returned to normal.

CassandreWalker, Lititia Buckman, Shona Kidd and Maria Lowe argued it was a relief for anyone in a car crash or burning house to hear the siren, and equally important for letting the community know something was happening.

It also gave people the opportunity to stop and spare a thought for the volunteers who were giving up their own time to help others, they said.

Waimakariri mayor Dan Gordon and local councillor Wendy Doody met with Fenz area commander Dave Berry, Oxford brigade chief Trevor Ealam and deputy Brian Thompson on Friday, where it was decided the siren would be returned to its original system.

Original article taken from 

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