The Chernovs had their own Black Saturday experience in the Yarra Valley area and were greatly complimentary about the local brigades' efforts.
Just a quick reminder of the forthcoming Memorial Service for deceased firefighters at Fiskville on the first Sunday in May. Let's continue our tradition of a very strong showing at this function.
Good news on the red tape cutting front. You will remember that the Jones Inquiry found that CFA should examine its administrative procedures in relation to volunteers transferring between brigades. For decades the practice has involved resigning before joining the new brigade. To what end we are not sure but the good news is that the requirement has been discontinued - a victory for practicality, thanks to Lex de Man.
At the April Board Meeting the CEO updated attendees on the Independent Fiskville Investigation and reported that with two-thirds of the scheduled interviews completed there is confidence that the report will be completed by 30 June.
The Board also heard of progress of the updated Safety First Strategy for 2012-2015 which clearly addresses our primary goal - ensuring that everyone returns home safely. A broad range of health and safety factsheets will be available shortly.
A recent financial viability review was discussed and referred to the Fire Equipment Maintenance Advisory Committee for comment.
CFA has been asked by the Fire Services Commissioner to review sites identified by the Shire of Yarra Ranges for bushfire refuges. It is expected that a working group of experts will address factors including firefighter safety and bushfire attack levels.
Finally, the long-standing CFA tradition of supporting the Royal Children's Hospital Good Friday Appeal has seen brigades collect $1.25 million from communities. An extraordinary effort by those brigades involved.