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Recognising our specialist responders
National Volunteer Week is underway and, in recognition of our very important members, we focus on the specialist roles brigades perform in addition to traditional firefighting.
Many of our District 14 brigades have worked hard to obtain additional skills that are used to protect people in our communities from non-fire emergencies.
District 14 has a strong road accident rescue capacity with Melton (staff & volunteers), Werribee, Epping and Plenty Fire Brigades all having rescue vehicles.
It has a significant role in our communities with our four brigades extracting around 60 casualties from vehicles each year in addition to the many other tasks performed by responders.
Did you know that our road accident rescue responders are also trained to perform other types of rescues? People often get themselves stuck in uncomfortable situations and firefighters have to free them.
Responders are required to undertake a significant amount of training to ensure they are equipped to perform rescue tasks in a safe manner and provide the most appropriate patient care.
“A skilled rescue operator must be adaptable and be able to work in a close knit team. They must be able to draw on the experience and knowledge of the team as a collective,” said Adrian Marshman, Vice President, CFA Rescue Association.
Adrian Marshman also notes the impact that exposure to car accidents and traumatic events can have on emergency responders.
“Rescue operations are one of the very few aspects in emergency services where we actually get the opportunity to make the difference as to whether a person lives or dies. This can have an uplifting effect when the outcome is positive or it can be hugely negative when the outcome has not gone to plan.”
Like our rescue operators, Whittlesea and South Morang fire brigades are very familiar with the additional strain traumatic events can have on all members. Both are trained in emergency medical response with others to undertake the training later this year.
On day two of National Volunteer Week, District 14 thanks our members who respond to road accident rescues, respond our rehabilitation unit and carry out gas flare-offs. We thank marine fire responders, staging area operators and all the others with specialist skills.