SES volunteers across NSW will be resourced with almost 500 new vehicles, marine vessels and trailers as part of a massive fleet upgrade to better equip our heroes in orange to tackle floods, storms and other emergencies.
Minister for Emergency Services Troy Grant and Treasurer Dominic Perrottet announced a record $56.4 million will be spent over four years for the NSW State Emergency Service’s (SES) fleet program.
Mr Grant said 9,500 NSW SES volunteers stand ready to answer the call to help when times are tough and the community can feel confident they are well-equipped.
“The work of NSW SES volunteers is vital, their contribution is invaluable and by continuing to invest in our volunteers we ensure they stand ready to tackle any emergency at a moment’s notice,” Mr Grant said.
“Our tireless volunteers deserve vehicles and equipment that ensures their lifesaving tasks are performed safely with maximum efficiency and in minimum time.
“As technology advances we can’t afford for our NSW SES volunteers to be left behind. The Government delivered a five-year refresh of the NSW SES fleet and now we’re continuing that investment so NSW SES Units also have state-of-the-art equipment for water rescues.”
Mr Perrottet said the Government’s strong financial management and firm leadership has given NSW a budget that ensures our community is safer and our volunteers better supported.
“The SES is always there to provide a vital helping hand when things go wrong, and we want to ensure they have the best equipment possible to do the job,” Mr Perrottet said.
“The volunteers in orange deliver for people in need, and this is a budget which delivers the equipment they need to lend a help handing.”
NSW SES Commissioner Mark Smethurst welcomed the funding injection that further future-proofs the agency’s resources.
“This investment means volunteers can continue to deliver our mission of “saving lives and protecting communities” safely and cost effectively,” Commissioner Smethurst said.
From 2012-2017 the NSW Government invested $46 million for the procurement, maintenance and control of the 637 strong SES operational vehicle fleet.
The NSW SES Operational Fleet Replacement Program will continue to replace SES vehicles and also fund the purchase of equipment inventory, marine vessels and trailers.
The funding will enable the provision of 270 vehicles, 124 marine vessels, and 95 trailers. In 2018-19, 78 vehicles, 37 marine vessels, 30 trailers and 5 snowmobiles will be delivered.
The NSW SES last year responded to over 32,000 requests for assistance and performed over 750 flood rescues across the state.