Firefighting & Drought relief trains for Australia
The idea is to have Government supplied Firefighting trains (much like the ones used throughout Europe i.e Windhoff firefighter trains) to act as additional firefighting support in hard to get to areas as well as water resupply for RFS firetrucks and emergancy water resupply in areas after a natural disaster or for drought stricken areas.
These trains could be placed throughout the rail network at strategic locations (such as Lithgow, Heathcote, Moss Vale for Sydney region) ready to go (pre-fire season) and manned by RFS personnel as well as train crew. Aside from providing an on ground fire fighting capability in some hard to access National Parks they could act as mobile water refill stations meeting with fire trucks at locations along the rail network with it's trackside maintenance roads making it accessible for fire trucks.
Additionally if branch lines were to be built to desalination plants and major rural town water reserviors these trains could be used to run water from desalination plants to drought stricken towns in a more efficent manner. This could also provide an infrastructure / economical & employment boost in some regions to undertake such a project.