In a year that hosted the Winter Olympics and the Commonwealth Games, 2018 will bring a special competition to Griffith in August.
It was recently announced the third Regional Firefighter Championships will be held in the MIA, despite its distance from Sydney.
The Firefighting Championships bring together NSW Fire and Rescue teams from across the state to compete in a series of events designed to “develop, maintain and enhance the operational skills of firefighters”.
Danielle Mckay is a Griffith firefighter and a member of the championship committee. She says the hosting process could be likened to an Olympic bid.
“Griffith puts in a bid, like the Olympics, to host the championships, which are held three times a year,” she said.
”We were successful in our bid, even though we’re further out past Sydney than we should be.”
Ms McKay says Griffith’s facilities and wide open spaces were a major draw card for the event organisers.
“They’ve been out to Griffith before and I think they liked the grounds here. They’re nice and flat, green and pretty,” she said.
The event involves a number of challenges designed to teach people to hone their skills.
“It involves exercises or events that simulate what happens in real firefighting, like adding hose-lengths, making sure it’s done quickly, hooking into hydrants, putting out fires,” she said.
“If a truck breaks down we have an event to simulate that.”
Griffith’s Fire and Rescue team had their first training session last week.
They also invited Yenda Fire & Rescue and members of the Rural Fire Service to their first training session, who are both considering entering teams.
Ms McKay feels the championships are a great opportunity for stations to meet other teams.
“Gavin (Wickedan) goes to every Championship and I think he could tell you the name of someone from every fire station who attends,” she said.
“It’s a great way to get out there and meet people from different places.”
The Griffith Regional Firefighter Championships will run from August 4-5.