Flood and swift water rescue crews have been put through their paces during a training exercise at Atkinson Dam in the Somerset region.
Brisbane based Public Safety and Training Response (PSTR) brought in some of the World’s best instructors from the United States to share their expertise.
The eight highly skilled flood and swift water rescue technicians underwent training in flood rescue boat and personal water craft while at the dam.
Technical Rescue Instructor Trainer Mike Mather said that Australia had some of the worst natural disasters in the World.
“Obviously we have a lot of friends that are first responders here in Australia — so we get emails and notes and I ran a couple of discussion groups from people that live and work here and just seeing how exhausted and worn-out they were during some of the wildfires and some of the flooding.
“It just seems like they put away their wildland kit and they had to get out their flood kit,” he said.
“The weather World-over just seems more extreme now, if it’s a drought, it’s a real drought and once that drought is over it is time for flooding and it doesn’t seem like there is much in between so it’s really good to get as many people trained up as possible,” Instructor Mather said.
Head of Operations for the Public Safety and Training Group Trevor Arnold explained what crews went through in the training exercise.
“What they learned today is flood boat operations and jet ski operations, so to use them in quite hostile situations they have to be very very skilled and not just normal boat operators.
“Hence the length of the course and the instructors we’ve brought out from the USA,” he said.
Rescue 3 training provides internationally recognised accreditation for personnel to operate in high-risk environments.