Fire station siren to sound on Anzac Day a WWII relic
WHILE Anzac Day commemoration services for this year have been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Ballina fireys will be keeping one Anzac tradition alive.
The fireys have for many years sounded the alarm at 5am to call people to the Ballina Dawn Service.
There won’t be a Dawn Service in Ballina so Captain Dennis Henry said the timing of the sounding of the siren this year would be adjusted to 6am.
During WWII fire station sirens were used through the country as air raid warning devices.
The original fire siren was mounted on top of Ballina Fire Station at 60 Crane Street, Ballina in January 1942.
Another two sirens were installed a short time later in Ballina at ‘The Fiveways’ on Hill Street, East Ballina and at the residence of Mr R.D. Lang at Norton and Swift Streets. The three sirens were to be used to warn Ballina residents of impending air raids.
On hearing the sirens, residents were to turn off all lights in their houses and ensure that no light was visible to enemy aircraft and the town would be in complete darkness until the all clear was given.
On August 15, 1945 the town of Ballina celebrated the surrender of Japan just after 9am with the sirens being activated along with steam, whistles and bells.
The siren from the old Ballina Fire Station was relocated to the new station in 2015 at Tamarind Drive.