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D2 inter-brigade training
Approximately two years ago four brigades came together and conducted training on a Thursday night in Castlemaine. At the completion of that night the four brigades involved; Campbells Creek, Castlemaine, Chewton and Harcourt agreed to continue the training bi-monthly with each brigade taking a turn at being the host.
These nights have grown to not only be great training exercises but have also allowed members to familiarise themselves with the different types of appliances and equipment each brigade has.
This environment has enabled invaluable knowledge and experience to be shared amongst members of all skill levels. Some topics covered throughout these sessions include running grass fire simulation and entrapment, plantation fire fighting, advance pumping exercises, structure fire fighting methods, breathing apparatus (20 cylinders in the hour) and protected premises alarm activation. Not only has each brigade hosted a session, recently Castlemaine organised a training day in Bendigo which involved permanent staff providing a overview of some of the equipment they have including the TIC, gas detector, PE Van and an exercise in supplying water to the ladder platform.
On average participation has seen at least 40 members attend these training sessions.Recently Maldon Brigade have also joined in on the training and enjoyed both the practical and social environment. These sessions are approximately 1-1.5 hours in length, with a coffee/supper/debrief following.
August was Harcourt's turn to host. Due to having several large operating and non operational (possible storage) cool store's in our area without reticulated water in close proximity, we set out to simulate supplying water to a ladder platform from a static supply and also from tankers bringing in water from other sources.
After the crew leaders briefing Chewton Tanker and Harcourt T1 were set up to draft from the creek with Chewton boosting into Campbells Creek T1 with a line of 64 mm and Harcourt T1 boosting into Castlemaine Tanker also with a line of 64 mm. Campbells Creek T1 and Castlemaine Tanker then boosted into Castlemaine Pumper with a line of 64 mm each.
Also assisting with water supply Harcourt T2 was set up to to deliver water directly into Castlemaine Pumper with Maldon T2 and Sutton Grange tanker transporting water from a "distant" hydrant. We were able to maintain around 1700 litres per minute. Hopefully we do not have to put this to use, but at least we now know the capabilities of the appliances involved.