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Buller project a winner
A joint-agency project which aims to make it easier for emergency services to locate 000 callers on Mt Buller has been named a Victorian finalist in this year's Resilient Australia Awards.
The Mt Buller Addressing Project – led by ESTA with strong involvement from CFA over a number of years – received a judge’s commendation, one of eight finalists named in the State Government category.
The new addressing system on Mt Buller, which has operated for about three months with further developments in the pipeline, is equipping emergency 000 callers to better explain their location and make it easier for emergency services to identify their location.
CFA Operations Officer Paul Horton, who is stationed at Mt Buller during the winter months, said that the Mt Buller Urban Addressing Project would mean faster response times in an environment where time was critical.
“The idea is to help the caller – especially if they are a visitor to the area – be more specific about where they are so that stress fear and panic are minimised and the lead agency can better direct their resources,” he said.
Mount Buller attracts some 400,000 visitors annually, has the largest lift capacity in Victoria, and a capacity of 7500 beds. Under the ESTA project, hundreds of buildings, including each chalet, lodge and commercial enterprise, have been allocated a number and road name.
In the past, emergency services have had to rely heavily on the local knowledge of responding crews to supplement information received from callers.
Paul said that wherever tourists gather in numbers and a need for 000 arises, similar models could be considered.
The Mt Buller model, which was developed from the ground up, will be used as a best practice example for the States 5 Ski resorts as well as on French Island. In December 2013, CFA commenced similar projects at Falls Creek and Mt Hotham in conjunction with the Alpine Shire.
The finalists are amongst more than 30 Victorian nominees which displayed a commitment to making their communities safer, stronger, and better prepared to respond to emergencies. The award ceremony was held on 22 September.
See also: Mt Buller 000 Ready