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Hi-tech vehicles readied for action
A fleet of 21 new high-tech fire trucks and emergency response vehicles is entering its final phase of testing at a special Vehicle Commissioning Centre opened at Dandenong South this week..
CFA Chief Officer Euan Ferguson said the centre would begin final commissioning of vehicles from Monday (25 Mach) and continue over the coming months.
“These specialist vehicles are the most advanced in Australia, if not the world, and will provide CFA with improved capability to manage structure fires, hazardous material incidents and communications across the state,” he said.
“They will be housed at the centre while they undergo final logistical and commissioning work before being tested and sent to brigades.
“By having the vehicles housed in the one location it will significantly speed up the process of commissioning - especially when it comes to adding the hundreds of pieces of equipment that need to be stowed on each vehicle – and also provide a safer, protected home for this expensive, high-tech equipment.”
The 21 specialist vehicles are worth around $15 million and will be delivered across the state throughout the year.
Mr Ferguson said commissioning the vehicles had been a drawn out process but, barring any unforeseen set-backs, he expected the first Aerial Appliance and HAZMAT vehicles to start rolling out the doors to their new homes within weeks.
“There has been a significant amount of work done making vehicle modifications, drafting training manuals, working through staffing matters and consulting with staff and volunteers and it’s great to see we are moving closer to getting these vehicles to their brigades,” he said.
The specialist vehicles are:
- (4) Aerial Appliances
These are vehicles used for high rise structure fires and
will be deployed to Mildura, Shepparton, Warrnambool and Fiskville (for
training and use at various locations)
- (4) HAZMAT vehicles
These vehicles are used for chemical, biological and
radiological incidents and will be deployed to Hallam, Shepparton, Corio and
- (7) Field Operating Vehicles (FOV)
These vehicles are used for communication during fires.
- (2) Mobile Command Vehicles (MCV)
These high-tech vehicles will provider communication during
- (4) PODS
These props containing different types of high-tech
equipment will allow firefighters to quickly deploy specific resources to
particular types of incidents, such as trench rescues.
The new fleet is part of the transformation of CFA from a bushfire fighting force to one which also protects more than half of Melbourne’s population and two thirds of its geographical area.
This is in addition to the many large regional centres around Victoria which include large residential areas and industrial assets.
The new fleet will ensure those communities are better served than ever.