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MFB firefighters join Victorian response deployed to NSW fires

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18 Oct 2013
Victorian firefighters are being deployed to New South Wales to provide relief to fire agency colleagues.

Minister for Police and Emergency Services and Minister for Bushfire Response Kim Wells said that in response to a request from New South Wales, more than 120 Victorians would be assisting in various functions including providing assistance at Rural Fire Service headquarters, impact assessment, strike teams and incident management teams.

"With the challenging conditions in New South Wales, we are more than happy to support our friends with bushfire fighting efforts in any way we can," Mr Wells said.

"New South Wales and Victorian fire agencies have a long history of assisting each other during times of need."

Fire Services Commissioner Craig Lapsley said staff and volunteers from MFB, CFA, the Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI), and Parks Victoria are part of this Victorian response.

"One ground observer team from Wodonga and North West Metropolitan Melbourne area departed last night, while one more crew from the Eastern Metropolitan Melbourne area and an MFB crew departed from Craigieburn Fire Station this morning," Mr Lapsley said.

"Four CFA strike teams and Heavy Tankers from across northern Victoria will also be deployed from Wodonga later today. They will commence duties in NSW on Saturday through to Monday.

"An incident management team consisting of Operations, Logistics, Planning, Situation, Resources, Safety Advisors and Mapping will also depart today.

"All crews will meet in Wodonga for a briefing first, before deployment to New South Wales."

CFA Acting Chief Officer Steve Warrington said: "CFA crews are well equipped and eager to support our Rural Fire Service colleagues and the New South Wales community in this time of need."

"This should also be a timely reminder for Victorians not be complacent. Summer has had an early start up north; there's no doubt the fire season ahead will be a challenging one for us all

"I ask all Victorians to be prepared, check the Fire Danger Ratings in your area and have a fire plan in place to ensure yours and your family's safety."

(Victorian Government media release)

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