Two simple words have been found to render firefighters incapable of performing their duties, often leaving them dumbstruck, confused or even comatosed for hours, a snap university study has found.
The University of New England this week used a heavily timbered part of its Armidale campus to test Rural Fire Service volunteers under “firestorm” conditions and the results, after various words and phrases were broadcast to them over loud speakers, are indeed staggering.
“Firstly, we want to state that these volunteers were firies on their enforced downtime from battling fires in and around the New England area,” the study’s coordinator Professor of Sociology Blaize R’Ampant told The Bug.
“These volunteers, already exhausted from days of toil, readily gave of their down time for this study and their participation in no way affected the RFA’s ability to fight the fires now threatening towns and rural properties around here and other large parts of Australia.
“Once we had simulated a firestorm situation, we hit them with “your own home is burning down right now” and they just kept fighting the fires to the very best of their abilities.
“We hit them with “this fire is going to run over the top of you and kill you’ and they didn’t take a backward step.
“But when our loudspeakers boomed out ‘CLIMATE CHANGE’ over and over again, to a man and a woman they simply froze where they were standing and were incapable of moving for quite some hours afterwards.
“In a real-life situation, many would have perished there and then.
“We have absolutely no idea why those two little words trigger such a calamitous reaction but we’re determined to find out what those causal factors are.”
Professor R’Ampant said that while larger testing was needed to verify the study’s findings, it showed some politicians had probably been very savvy to have deliberately avoided using “climate change” at all during the current fire crises.
“While they copped some flak, the likes of Gladys Berejiklian, Scott Morrison, Michael McCormack and Barnaby Joyce should all be congratulated for avoiding the phrase all together during the current crises and, indeed, over recent years if not decades,” she added.
“How they instinctively knew that now was not the time to talk about climate change probably deserves a serious in-depth study of its own.”
And in Melbourne, the only Greens member of the House of Representatives Adam Bandt admitted he had used “climate change” frequently in recent times.
Now that he knew how the words “climate change” adversely affected firefighters, he therefore took full responsibility for the current fires crises and apologised unconditionally.
Both he and the Australian Greens Senator Jordon Steele-John from Western Australia will be making announcements about their political futures later today.