Emerald and Blackwater State Emergency Service have officially taken possession of a purpose-built four-wheel-drive rescue appliance and two high-tech response trailers.
Central Highlands’ Mayor Cr Kerry Hayes presented Emerald SES personnel with a new four-wheel-drive medium rescue vehicle to replace the current vehicle that has served them so well for more than 15 years.
The truck is the first of its type designed specifically by members of the SES to incorporate the latest technology. It includes a built-in 9kva generator, a 6.5 metre remotely operated light mast, satellite communication, built-in Incident Command Centre, a multi charging station for recharging of multiple hand-held radios, a storm damage and chainsaw operation platform and storage, eco-friendly shelving and ladder storage, and a charging control centre for battery operated tools.
The new vehicle is a joint-funded project with $15,000 provided by a Queensland Government grant and $211,000 provided by the Central Highlands Regional Council as part of its 10-year State Emergency Service capital works strategic plan.
Acting Regional Manager Central Region State Emergency Service Andrew Wyatt presented Nicole Philips, Group Leader Emerald and coordinator Blackwater State Emergency Service, with two new response trailers; one for Blackwater and one for Emerald.
The trailers were supplied by Queensland Fire and Emergency Services through its major plant and equipment replacement program. Each trailer is valued at $16,000 and comes with built-in power supply, ladder racks and red and blue safety lighting. The trailers replace units that were originally supplied in 1977.
Mayor Kerry Hayes said the council is well aware of the enormous contribution of the wonderful SES volunteers that have committed more than 5000 volunteer hours in the past twelve months.
‘These people often undertake operations in extremely adverse conditions when the rest of us are at home tucked up in our comfortable beds.
‘They give their own time for an unbelievable amount of training to ensure they and their equipment are ready to do what is needed when the community calls upon them.
‘These SES volunteers are a critical part of our community and form an essential component of council’s emergency response capability; they really are our orange angels and we will support them wherever and whenever we can.’