Farting pig triggers gas alarm

BY ROBYN GRACE
Last updated 15:23 26/11/2009

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The unsettled stomach of a 120-kilogram pig was to blame for a fumy false alarm near the Australian town of Bendigo.

Fifteen firefighters and two tankers rushed to respond to a report of a strong smell of gas after their pagers sent an alert.

The area has been identified as one of the state's most at-risk of bushfires and residents are able to use only bottled gas, thus increasing the risk of a blaze.

But when the crews arrived at the house in Axedale 10 minutes later, the source of the offending smell was clear.

"When we got to the property where (the smell) was, these people had a pig; a big sow which was about 20 metres away from the house," CFA captain Peter Harkins told Radio 3AW.

"I don't know what they were feeding this thing but we certainly heard it."

Mr Harkins said firefighters had "done the right thing" in responding to the call.

"Everyone's a little bit toey with the recent hot weather we've had up here so we responded as we normally do," he said.

"All I can say is we followed through with our call."

Mr Harkins said he had captained the rural brigade for "a number of years" but it was the first time they had been called to a farting pig.

"We did hose it down a little bit. It was a little bit on the nose," he said.

"The householder was a little bit embarrassed. I think he was copping a bit of the blame."

The putrid pig is as yet unnamed but brigade members have included that duty on tonight's meeting agenda.

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- Sydney Morning Herald

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