Bega review urges improved fire response co-ordination
A review of this year’s fires in the NSW south-east coastal area of Bega Valley has recommended statewide changes to strengthen collaboration between different emergency agencies and departments. It says NSW should establish a fully integrated call and dispatch service for all emergencies and possibly set up a multi-agency emergency management operations complex. Better options for call and dispatch, telecommunications and information-sharing across the departments should be explored. Boundaries between fire departments should be eliminated so the nearest available truck can be dispatched. The review also recommends the fire service fleet be fitted with automatic vehicle locator devices to provide a clearer picture of where resources are deployed. The State Government has referred most recommendations to the Emergency Services Board of Commissioners for consideration and to develop possible implementation plans. The Rural Fire Service will trial automatic vehicle locator devices within the next three months.