Left to right: Tolmie brigade Lieutenant Milton Taylor, Commander Paul Scragg, Tolmie brigade Captain John Valcich, Rachel Hubbard and Project Manager Steven Hill.
CFA has completed the production of the 100th standard-build field command vehicle (FCV), which is based on a Ford Ranger. The Ranger has been evaluated to ensure it meets CFA’s capability requirements and provides a high level of safety and durability.
Tolmie Fire Brigade recently took delivery of the 100th new standard-build FCV at a community open day. More than 50 Tolmie brigade volunteers, community members, plus DELWP and SES members attended.
As well as receiving the FCV, more than 15 brigade members were presented with service awards.
Over the past five years, the CFA Standard FCV Build Program has grown in popularity. This vehicle will help the brigade to manage emergency incidents in an effective way.
Each year the design of the vehicle has been improved to offer innovative solutions to meet brigade needs.
The standard build FCV is built on a Ford Ranger XL 4x4 cab chassis, with additional features including snorkel, dual batteries, fridge, all-terrain tyres, bull bar, whiteboards, innovative equipment stowage solutions, fire extinguisher and 360-degree emergency lighting.
A new feature in the latest model has the flexibility to relocate the Tait radio microphones from the cabin to the body. This allows operators to take advantage of the incident management capability built into the body – whiteboards and workspaces can be accessed without having to use portable radios during incidents.
Cabin accessories include two Tait radios, reversing camera, portable radio charger, additional 12V charging points, flashing headlights and siren.
The standard-build project was developed to:
- standardise the FCV fleet to give a common platform for incident management
- have a body module designed for ease of changeover between cab chassis
- have a lightweight construction without comprising strength to maximise payload
- be GVM and ADR compliant
- To be fit for purpose and cost effective
- minimise damage to the cab chassis during fit-out to enhance the future resale value.
District 23 Assistant Chief Fire Officer Rod Railton supports a standard FCV fleet.
“We have many FCVs across the district in rural and urban environments and the standard-build FCV will cater for all needs,” he said. “The more standardisation we can have across our vehicles, the easier it is for our people to work across different brigade and group boundaries.”
CFA Manager Fleet Operations Tim Smith said standard-build program provides many benefits to brigades, including regulatory compliance, economies of scale and compliance with procurement policy. These benefits are achieved by a CFA project managing the entire build, relieving brigade members from the arduous task of independently procuring a vehicle.
The standard FCV can be fully funded by brigades or through grant programs such as the Volunteer Emergency Services Equipment Program. There are also a number of standard-build FCVs funded through CFA’s capital budget.
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