Last month, Victoria State Emergency (VICSES) volunteers joined forces with the Victoria Police Search and Rescue squad to take part in a four-day concentrated High Angle Rescue Operator training exercise.
Held in the Grampians, the intensive course consisted of various training exercises involving different high angle rescue scenarios, designed to strengthen the skills and confidence of members.
A high angle rescue involves the use of technical rope rescue skills to rescue injured, or otherwise incapacitated persons, on terrain at slopes of 60º or greater. It involves the need to hoist victims from one level to another using rope, pulleys, harnesses, belay devices and various hauling implements.
High angle rescue operators can often build on-site rigging systems designed to raise or lower victims to the optimum elevation for safe extraction.
The aim of the course was to also build on the existing knowledge of members and reinforce the skills required by high angle rescue operators, when working on incidents over vertical cliffs or buildings.
This type of joint exercise with Victoria Police is a great way to understand how both agencies can come together and work as one.
It not only gives VICSES the chance to test the rescue and recovery skills of volunteers in a simulated training environment, but also bolsters the organisation’s ability to support the community efficiently during these types of incidents.
For information on VICSES or how to volunteer, visit www.ses.vic.gov.au.