Vandals tag Bethells Valley station
Vandals have tagged the Bethells Valley rural fire station only days before its 30th anniversary celebrations.
All four sides of the building were spray-painted to the dismay of volunteer firefighters preparing for a founding members' open day on June 14.
"It's a very uncool thing to do to a community station when we're only here to help," chief fire officer Eugene Scott says.
"People are volunteering their time in the community for them and they do things like this.
"It was a big concern for us right before the anniversary."
The brigade wants to find witnesses to the attack which happened after 10pm when firefighters finished their training night.
Vandals spray-painted the glass door in front of the fire trucks and the steel wall cladding of the station on the corner of Bethells Rd and Te Aute Ridge Rd.
"The whole front of the station is stained timber so we're having to paint with a coloured metal paint which looks like a stain," Scott says.
On the same night vandals tagged soccer clubrooms in McLeod Rd, Te Atatu South, the Bethells Beach toilet blocks and a hall in Waitakere with similar markings.
"They obviously did a drive around and had a night of tagging."
The fire building stands on the same site as the original fire station which burnt down on March 6, 2001.
That was a black day for Bethells volunteer firefighters, who were summoned by the siren to see their own building ablaze.
It is thought an electrical fault sparked the fire which destroyed nearly all the station's records.
Brigade members appealed to readers for pictures of the early days in a Nor-west News story - and were not disappointed.
"We had no photos of the fire station until a few weeks ago," Scott says. "We're gradually putting the archives together ourselves for the open day and the future."
Meanwhile Scott is grateful to members of the Tag Out Trust for offering to come to the firefighters' rescue.
Phone the station on 810 8139 with any information about the vandalism.
- Norwest News
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