Mark Tarbett, CFA Manager of Support Services, said CFA’s female members had been requesting bushfire turnout gear that better suited their shape for some time.
“The new design has different trousers and a better fitting coat. The braces have been removed and the new waist band is elastic and has a draw cord. Sizing has also been changed to be more appropriate to female size grading,” he said.
“The change was introduced after long term feedback and trials and will allow for more comfort and convenience which means individual performance will no doubt improve.”
CFA conducted a trial of the new PPC, with two members from each of CFA’s eight regions providing feedback.
Noojee CFA Captain Dawn Thomas welcomed the introduction of the modified PPC and was pleased to be part of the trial.
“It’s very comfortable to wear and I really like the fit,” she said.
“It’s definitely something that has been needed for a long time. With the number of women at CFA continuing to increase, it’s important that appropriate equipment is provided.”
The new gear will be progressively introduced and become available to CFA’s 11,500 female members from this coming fire season.
Mr Tarbett said the introduction of the PPC was an important step in acknowledging the diversity at CFA.
“Women are an important part of that diversity. CFA is a community in itself and needs to better reflect the diversity in our Victorian communities in any way we can,” he said.