VICSES responds to tree down at Flemington Racecourse

VICSES responds to tree down at Flemington Racecourse

07/03/2022, 3:42 PM

VICSES Essendon Unit volunteers have been busy over the weekend, attending several major incidents, including a downed tree at the Flemington racecourse which caused a number of serious injuries.

The massive tree, the trunk of which was estimated at 30 metres long, fell on to cars and attendees at around 6:30pm on Saturday, prompting a multi-agency response by VICSES; Ambulance Victoria; Victoria Police, and Fire Rescue Victoria which took over six hours to conclude.

VICSES Essendon, Footscray and Broadmeadows Units sent 12 volunteers in total to manage the risk to the public; work with other agencies and WorkSafe representatives to provide scene protection; set up lighting, and liaise between agencies as they worked to manage the incident.

Once WorkSafe completed its investigation, and the patients transported from the scene, our crews spent two hours removing the vast trunk and 10-metre long branches.

VICSES volunteers received praise for their professionalism and innate understanding of how the emergency services work together, to manage a large and complex incident such as this. Our VICSES volunteers, following a team debrief, were offered the use of peer supports services which are always made available after an event of such significance.

The Essendon Unit volunteers were back out at 3:00am on Sunday morning, attending around half a dozen storm and flood related jobs which unfortunately included two vehicles stuck in floodwater on Wurundjeri Way.

We once again encourage Victorians to avoid driving into floodwater. Floodwater may look calm and easy to traverse, but its weight may have damaged the road’s surface, and contain large chunks of debris. It may also cause your car to float into and collide with lamp posts, street furniture and other infrastructure.

VICSES Essendon Unit volunteers were then involved later on Sunday in a search and rescue effort on the Maribyrnong River, concluding a busy and, at times, extraordinary weekend. VICSES Footscray and Port Phillip Unit volunteers assisted with the search, and Brimbank and Broadmeadows Units provided the lighting towers to guide the way.

On behalf of the VICSES community, we thank the VICSES volunteers for their considerable efforts this past weekend.