With the heroism of the Rural Fire Service dominating the news as Australia's bushfire crisis wears on, there's been an influx of interest from people wanting to sign up as a volunteer.
While welcoming the interest, local stations have also warned that the task is not always as exciting as it may seem from recent weeks.
At an open day at the Austinmer station on Saturday, dozens of would-be volunteers turned up to hear about what's involved in being an RFS volunteer.
Brigade captain Ross Leonard said the station, which is headquartered right up against the escarpment in the northern suburbs, was keen to find new members who lived within eight minutes of the Buttenshaw Drive station.
"In an emergency, we need to be able to get our first truck out of the station within five minutes, and then next truck within eight minutes - so the closer they live, the quicker we can get them out," he said.
"All the areas of bush between the houses up here are a big concern, and it doesn't take a lot for that to go up."
Gemma Weidner, 20, said she was serious about the chance to volunteer with her local station, and hoped to eventually carve out a career as a professional firefighter.
"I live just down the road and this is something I've always wanted to do, so this is the first step," she said.
"We live so close to the bush, and when you hear about the fires getting closer to us you start to worry. Volunteering here is another way to give back to the community."
Mr Leonard said he was keen to make any new members knew the full reality of the "unsexy" role of manning a station year-round.
He also warned it would be "at least six months" before any new volunteers would be sent out to fight fires.
"It's not like the old days where you turn up and pay your 20c membership and find someone's overalls and boots and get on a truck," he said.
"There is a lot of training involved."
Early police and criminal checks help to weed out anyone with dubious motives, he said, and the six week lag time between sign up and these checks also helped to make sure volunteers were serious.
"In six weeks we'll get a bit of rain, there's no smoke in the air, and realistically it's a lot sexier to go down the beach and do a surf patrol than what its like to come and clamp around in the bush," he said.
Nevertheless, Mr Leonard said he hoped to convert many of the interested volunteers into new members, to take some of the pressure off the station in future bushfire seasons.
"We've done nearly 6500 hours since September, and last year we did 2500 for the whole fire season," he said.
"More members would mean we don't have to send crews out on back-to-back shifts."