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Mt Wallace FB wins Fiskville Cup (group exercise)
On Sunday 16 October, under fine but cloudy skies, brigade members from the Ballan Group of fire brigades donned their firefighting PPC, fired up the engines of their tankers and travelled to the sleepy township of Mt Egerton in readiness for the 42nd staging of the coveted Fiskville Cup – the Group's pre-summer readiness exercise.
Throughout the morning, teams responded to predetermined pager messages to multiple drills taking place throughout the area. The design of the messages required members to use their map reading skills to guide them in their response to incidents which included a car fire, trench rescue and first aid, gas prop training, electrical hazards around solar panels, pumping, draughting, and alike. Brigades were judged on safety, radio procedures, 'RECEO', etc. with points tallied at the end of the exercise to get an eventual winner.
One of the highlights was a digital fire provided by BullEx Australia. The digital fire consisted of a smoke machine and a screen designed to simulate a real fire and sustain the effects of being doused by water. If the team did not produce enough effort to put the fire out, the screen reignited itself.
Operations Manager Brett Boatman congratulated the Group for their innovation in organising the event; the variety of drills and the effort put into the Event’s organization and the way that the drills were reflective of the risks pertinent to the area.
One member commented of the exercise “where else can you be a Crew Leader at 9 different events on the one day”. It is true that sometimes it takes years to accumulate this type of experience.
Mt Wallace Fire Brigade took out the trophy as overall winners entitling them to the claim of victors of the 2016 Fiskville Cup. The award for Best Crew Leader, the Robert Molesworth award, was split between the Crewleaders of Mt Wallace and Blackwood Fire Brigades.
Members of the organising committee pass on thanks to Chris Chester from BullEx Australia for generously providing the digital fire.
Congratulations to all concerned on a very successful event.
Pictures by Blair Dellemijn - CFA Photographer and Chris Thom - Ballan Fire Brigade