Glenn Shaw and Jason Kaine Benalla Toyota, Mary Anne Eagan VFBV, Jim Renkin Benalla Group Officer, Geoff Rowe Benalla Deputy Group Officer and Rod Railton District 23 Commander.
The $4.8 million District Pick List program funded by community donations to the CFA & Brigades Donations Trust supports brigades with practical items at a local level.
While many brigades chose smaller items that their brigades needed such as hoses, torches, mussels and lighting, brigades in the Benalla Group pooled a proportion of their allocation to fund the purchase of one significant item that would benefit all the brigades in the group.
“We used the funds to cover the changeover cost on a new Toyota field command vehicle,” Benalla Group Deputy Group Officer Geoff Rowe said. “This is the fourth Toyota Landcruiser wagon utilised by the group. They have proven to be the most capable and reliable vehicle for our needs, working on often steep and difficult conditions in severe fire situations.
“The new Benalla Group FCV will be based in Benalla and will be used by all brigades in the group area to manage fireground resources and for incident management.
“The FCV will provide the fireground with a dedicated communications vehicle where the incident controller, divisional commander, sector commander or strike team leader can effectively manage the fire and resources. The vehicle also contains vital equipment to assist in the mapping and support of our fire crews on the fireground. When not used for operational activities the vehicle will be used to assist our members in transportation to training activities, meetings, etc.
“It will also be used to lead strike teams when deployed to local incidents and other localities, continued Geoff.
“Fireground and emergency incident management can be difficult from tankers and the new FCV will fulfil an important role in these areas for all brigades in the Benalla Group and when resources are deployed to distant locations.”
The Benalla Group of brigades is very appreciative of the support from the community and generous donations following the 2019-20 fires which funded the District Pick List program.
“The money that were generously donated by community members across Australia has provided the Benalla Group an opportunity to upgrade its FCV to better assist our brigades and members for many more years to come,” Geoff said.
“We are very thankful to both the community for the money donated and to Benalla Toyota for delivering a quality vehicle at a very acceptable price.”