News & Media

Small town brigade making big waves with PAVS

  • FF Janice Preston and B-CSC Darryl Sutton engaging with community with PAVS
  • FF Janice Preston and B-CSC Darryl Sutton delivering PAVS

The Property Advice Visit Service (PAVS) has delivered some unexpected outcomes for the Wairewa Fire Brigade and positive benefits for the community in South East Region.

From mid-December Wairewa brigade PAVS crew - Firefighter Janice Preston and Brigade Community Safety Coordinator Darryl Sutton - have been busy carrying out PAVS visits around the small East Gippsland town Wairewa.

Darryl says they found PAVS to be very interesting. “We are treating it as a big training exercise identifying problems and issues which need to be addressed such as: fire plugs that need maintenance; lack of road markers (blue cats eyes); properties with power lines running through trees; blocks of land that need slashing; and properties with a lot of rubbish that has accumulated. We've also identified where there is more than one dwelling on a property i.e. a house and a bungalow.”

The visits have also allowed the crew to put together a database of possible hazards and problems including residents who may need assistance if an emergency arises.

In addition to the targeted area of Nowa Nowa, the crew identified another 61 farms and residences in their brigade area. PAVS visits to these locations will be completed in the near future.

Darryl, who works in the local general store, says it has been great to work with Janice on PAVS as she has lived in the area for 30+ years and has been a brigade member for the past 15 years. Their combined local knowledge and local contacts have helped with delivering PAVS in the area.

The PAVS visits have been well received by residents who appreciate the information provided. The few negative reactions have given Darryl and Janice an opportunity to improve future PAVS visits. As Darryl says “For a small town and brigade I think we are moving in the right direction and helping people make an informed decision if the time arises.”

Footnote: Darryl is loving every minute of his challenging Brigade Community Safety Coordinator role as it provides the best opportunity to build up networks of people. Darryl would like to acknowledge the support he receives from Regional Community Education Coordinator Jodie Wilmes.

Last Updated: 16 February 2016