Hostel fire recovery on track


A thorough assessment of the Federal Backpackers Hostel and Spotted Dog by Emergency Services, Engineers, Insurance assessors and Council officers lead to its removal to guarantee public safety.

Queensland Fire Emergency Services Area Commander, John Pappas, said that following the fire it became evident the building would not be able to remain standing. 

“Our priority for the last 24 hours has been making the area safe, and unfortunately, we had to demolish part of the building to make that area safe,” Commander Pappas said. 

 “The last thing we wanted to do was take down the façade, but unfortunately it was not stable.

“Over the 48 hours since the fire it became very evident it was moving and the decision was made to make the area safe.”

The Federal Backpacker building being demolished

Recovery Phase

Emergency Services have since been carrying out work to ensure the safe reopening of Bourbong Street, in what Commander Pappas described was the ‘recovery phase.’

“Where the fire itself was the first phase of the incident, we appreciate 62 people have been displaced, businesses have been affected and it has been the great support of the Bundaberg community to put them back on their feet,” Commander Pappas said.

“We’re very grateful for the support of Council, the support of Queensland Police Service and disaster partners, as well as the community in this time.”

“Moving forward, we’ve had discussions with Queensland Police Service, Council and TMR, and in regards to opening the road work will be undertaken in the next 24 hours which will hopefully see the road reopened tomorrow.”

“We envisage crews will be on site and we may see some activity there for the next few days as we move into a recovery phase.”

Senior Sergeant at Bundaberg Police, Glenn Cameron said envisaged that Bourbong Street would be re-opened by midday, Friday 24 July. 

“The focus now is to make that area safe and get the road open for the Bundaberg community,” Sgt Cameron said. 

“They’ve been very patient, and we’ve thanked them for that and so hopefully by lunchtime tomorrow all that work should be done.”

“We understand the road closure has caused traffic delays within and around Bundaberg and we really are thanking the Bundaberg community for their patience in this difficult time.”