Bairnsdale's State Emergency Service volunteers will be better-equipped to respond to incidents, after receiving Australian Government funding for a new trailer. Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester announced the Bairnsdale SES Unit would receive $15,000 under the Stronger Communities
Programme to source a purpose-built Assist-Agency Trailer. The 'go-anywhere' trailer is designed to be quickly attached to a 4WD and deployed to rugged and remote areas for use as a Forward Command Base. It will be equipped with computer and printer hardware to provide topographic maps; contain sleeping equipment; food, lighting and radios. "The new trailer can be used in a missing persons search; at a crime scene; or in rescues and storm events," Mr Chester said. "SES volunteers are a critical part of coordinated responses to emergencies in Gippsland, working in partnership with local police, fire and ambulance. It is important they have the equipment they need to perform challenging tasks, at any time or location. "The funding will be provided under the Stronger Communities Programme, which allows not-forprofit organisations to bid for grants worth up to $20,000." East Gippsland Shire Council partnered with the Bairnsdale SES for the purpose of the grant application. Mayor Marianne Pelz said SES volunteers provided a critical community service for local residents and
visitors to the region. "The SES is on call day and night to respond to emergencies of all types, often in challenging conditions," Cr Pelz said.
"We are lucky to have an abundance of natural attractions in East Gippsland, but it also means we are also susceptible to fires, floods and emergencies in rugged terrain, making it essential that SES volunteers are properly equipped if they are asked to respond." The $15,000 grant will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the Bairnsdale SES, which relies on donations to contribute to ongoing