Biggest VICSES interstate deployment so far this year is underway

Biggest VICSES interstate deployment so far this year is underway

29/12/2023, 4:00 PM

In our largest interstate deployment this year, Victoria State Emergency Service (VICSES) volunteers and staff will be travelling to Queensland to support local emergency services with flood and storm recovery efforts.

The members will be split into two taskforces, with Task Force Alpha, including 42 VICSES personnel flying out tomorrow, and Taskforce Bravo who are transporting our vehicles including 10 Medium Rescue Trucks (MRTs) and a Command vehicle deployed today, to support VICSES personnel deployed.

Taskforce Alpha will involve one day of travel, three days of work and the final day to travel home.

The fleet of MRTs are currently enroute to Wodonga (Taskforce Bravo) to stage before continuing and accommodating near Sydney overnight before going onward to Queensland on Saturday and then flying home.

Support efforts will be largely focused on boots on the ground operations, with our members using their training and substantial experience of Chainsaw Operation and the Safe Working at Heights System (SWAHS) to remove trees down over roads and properties and repair building damage.

The deployment will divide into crews of four, which each crew to include a truck driver, two members qualified in chainsaw operation, and three qualified to undertake SWAHS.

The deployment will be made up of two crews each from all three Melbourne Metropolitan regions, and one crew each from Loddon Mallee, Grampians, Barwon South West, Gippsland, and Hume Regions.

In addition, 40 Country Fire Authority members will join the deployment as part of a multi-agency crew.

A further multi-agency deployment of Incident Management Team personnel (Fire Rescue Victoria, VICSES) is being established to deploy tomorrow.

Victoria may be requested to provide additional Incident Management Team (IMT) resources to various locations over the summer. IMT crews assist with coordinating emergency responders in the field and issuing community warnings.

Victoria’s strong and ongoing relationships with other states mean we can share personnel, skills, knowledge, equipment, and experience. Similarly, other states support Victoria following severe weather events, such as the NSWSES deployment in October 2022.

Quote attributable to VICSES Deputy Chief Officer, Readiness and Response, Alistair Drayton:

“We would like to thank everyone involved in the deployments to support our colleagues up north, as well as those who remain behind to continue to prepare and protect our communities in Victoria.”

“Our emergency responders work as one, in Victoria and across the nation, and we will continue to provide support wherever we can.”