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Firies and NSW SES put helicopter rescue skills to the test

Published: 19th August 2013

Fire & Rescue NSW (FRNSW) firefighters and NSW State Emergency Service (NSW SES) volunteers put their flood rescue skills to the test on Sunday, 18 August, in a series of exercises conducted using FRNSW’s helicopter – FireAir1.

The exercises included rescuing people from the roof of a car and a house, using specially constructed props from the NSW SES, which were partially submerged in water to simulate real-life flood rescue scenarios.

FRNSW Acting Commissioner Jim Smith said training exercises like this one were vital in maintaining and developing the skills of firefighters and other emergency service personnel.

'FRNSW is the largest provider of rescue services in NSW. Our aviation officers are highly skilled rescuers and it’s been a great opportunity for them to exercise their flood rescue skills in such realistic scenarios."

NSW State Emergency Service (NSW SES) Commissioner Murray Kear welcomed the opportunity for NSW SES Flood Rescue teams to be involved in this inter-agency training.

"Flood rescue is a combat role for the NSW SES with our flood rescue teams undertaking more than 200 flood rescues every year around the State. Our teams appreciate the opportunity to familiarise themselves with Level 4 flood rescue operations and develop their skills around aircraft in a multi-agency rescue environment," Commissioner Kear said.

"Training days such as these are invaluable in building relationships and networks across emergency services that promote more effective response under emergency conditions."