To give us the chance to discuss key CFA issues and topics with you, from next week we will be implementing fortnightly live discussion sessions, hosted by myself and Chief Officer Euan Ferguson on an alternating basis.
Some Board members also met representatives from Bobinawarrah and Milawa brigades to discuss matters of shared importance.
The New Zealand Earthquake:
Our hearts go out to those affected by the New Zealand earthquake. I have passed on our thoughts and condolences to Mike Hall, the National Commander of the New Zealand Fire Service. The Urban Search and Rescue response from Queensland and New Zealand has evoked a number of questions as to why a Victorian team was not dispatched. Under an International USAR plan, Australia has two international teams only. These are Queensland and New South Wales. Other state teams are intended for domestic use in the first instance. Please be assured that CFA has been part of a comprehensive plan developed to offer resources and capability to New Zealand, should a request occur. Regional Manager Trevor Andrews, from the NZFS, who has been on secondment with CFA since October last year has been an important information link to New Zealand. At this stage a contingent of Police from Victoria and Australia has been requested and DSE are sending a small number of logistics personnel to set up a base camp as a contingency for emergency service personnel at Christchurch. We are ready to be part of an integrated support force if a request is made.
The aim was to give Euan a tour of Southern Metro and the various challenges our Community Safety staff are taking on, and I really enjoyed getting out and about to experience first-hand all the great work they're doing.