05/05/2024 08:20 AM

The NSW State Emergency Service has led a mass casualty flood rescue exercise in Sydney this weekend, joined by experts in the field from across Australia and New Zealand.

The interagency training exercise at Manly Dam developed member’s skills through simulated flood rescue scenarios.

NSW SES Acting Commissioner Damien Johnston said the event demonstrated the depth of flood rescue skills members of the NSW SES had.

“This training exercise brought flood rescue experts from a number of organisations together to learn best practice and share skills, so we can continue to enhance our capabilities,” Acting Commissioner Johnston said.

“The NSW SES is proud to be a leader in the flood rescue space, and we’re always looking to improve and learn new skills.”

NSW SES Assistant Commissioner Dean Storey said the unprecedented flooding in NSW throughout the past four years had shown the need for increased flood rescue capabilities.

“We know we’ll be responding to more large-scale flooding events in the future, and we want to ensure our flood rescue operators are trained to the highest standard,” Assistant Commissioner Storey said.

“Interagency exercises like this are a great way to hone our capability so our experts are ready to save lives and build safer communities if disaster strikes.”

NSW SES Senior Manager Training Delivery Paul McQueen said fast moving water was one of the most dangerous natural hazards, but one flood rescue operators worked in often.

“Fast moving flood water can be a challenging environment for even the best trained rescuers,” he said.

“Navigating these hazards safely takes years of practice and requires a high level of skill and fitness, which is why interagency training exercises like this are so important.”

Flood Rescue experts from the NSW SES, Fire and Emergency New Zealand, Surf Life Saving Tasmania and Northern Territory Police, Fire & Emergency Services attended the event.

Media enquiries: NSW SES Media 1800 067 234 or media@ses.nsw.gov.au. 

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