Australia — The recent bushfire support operations have been one of the largest ever for VICSES, with over 1000 volunteers from across the State deployed to assist over 43 days of operations.
VICSES played a number of key roles in supporting the efforts of fire agencies, in co-ordinating relief centres across the State, and assisting at staging areas by providing lighting towers and volunteers to act as staging area managers or support personnel. Taskforces of SES volunteers were also deployed to assist with loss and damage assessments, traffic management and clearing trees from roadways.
Other tasks performed by VICSES volunteers included assisting with relocations, helping with the co-ordination of immediate relief arrangements, delivering community warnings and information, transporting supplies and personnel, providing liaison officers in emergency co-ordination centres and incident control centres, and providing supplies such as hygiene stations and temporary shelters.
Euroa Unit was part of the fire response working out of the Alexandra staging area, deploying 16 volunteers during the operation. Tasks performed by Euroa Unit volunteers included delivering food, water, toiletries and other essential items directly to affected communities, assisting with transport and catering, staging area management and working in Municipal Emergency Response Centres to help co-ordinate the relief effort.
Euroa Unit SES Controller Tony Kubeil said he was very proud of the efforts of the Euroa volunteers during the operation.
The willingness to lend a hand and the dedication shown by the Euroa SES volunteers was outstanding, Tony said.
The support they provided to communities across Victoria contributed to an integrated multi-agency emergency service response.
VICSES is recruiting volunteers now. For further information about becoming a volunteer, please call 1300 VIC SES (1300 842 737)