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Media Releases

Victorian crews to assist in Canadian firefight

POSTED: 
7 August 2018

Victorian emergency management personnel will fly to Sydney today ahead of their flight to Canada tomorrow to assist with the escalating fire situation.

The six member crew from CFA, Parks Victoria and the Department of Environment, Land, Water, and Planning (DELWP) will be on a 21 day deployment to Canada to work alongside local crews.

The Victorian group are part of an Australian contingent requested to assist after significant fire activity in British Colombia.

Several large wildfires have been raging across multiple Canadian provinces over the last month.

There are currently around 450 fires burning in British Columbia. Since the start of April this year, Canada has had 5,493 fires which have burnt more than 850,000 hectares.

State Response Controller Darrin McKenzie said Victorian crews would provide much needed support to our Canadian counterparts during this challenging time.

“Our aim is to support Canadian crews to bring the wildfires under control as quickly as possible,” Mr McKenzie said.

“We are fortunate to have a strong network of emergency management personnel who operate in specialist roles so we are pleased to share these resources and expertise with our international colleagues.

“We are proud of the relationship Australia has built with Canada over the past 16 years, and the support we can provide during their time of need.”

British Columbia’s ongoing connection with Australia allows for the exchange of personnel, knowledge, skills, equipment and technology in the event of an emergency.

Victoria has already deployed three emergency personnel to Greece and 17 to USA to assist with the fires and impact assessments in the fire-affected areas.

Victorian emergency management personnel will return ahead of the summer season with unique experiences of working alongside emergency services personnel in other agencies and integrating practices.