Community Fire Units

Community Fire Units

Introduction to Community Fire Units

A Community Fire Unit (CFU) is a team of local residents who live close to bush land areas across the ACT. These local volunteers are trained and equipped by ACT Fire & Rescue to safeguard their homes during a bushfire until the fire services arrive.

CFU volunteers utilise basic firefighting equipment (pumps, hoses and protective clothing) to prepare the areas surrounding their properties and prevent a bushfire from spreading from adjoining bushland to their houses and backyards.

A typical CFU team consists of 8 to 30 members and has a designated area encompassing 50 to 80 homes.

The focus is on bushfire education, prevention and preparation, covering areas such as:

  • Bushfire behavior
  • Safe housekeeping and gardening practices
  • Planning and preparation for bushfires
  • Operating fire-fighting equipment
  • Mop up operations

CFU members are a part of ACT Fire & Rescue and take direction from ACTF&R Officers but they are not fire-fighters.

The ACT CFU program began in late 2003. Following a successful trial of 8 units, the program has now expanded to 58 CFUs in high risk bushfire areas. There are around 768 volunteer members across the 58 units.