Interagency crisis-response exercise in WA

It was an all-agencies approach at Fleet Base West, Rockingham, as Exercise Vulcan Phoenix got underway.

CAPTION: HMAS Stirling and WA emergency services personnel care for simulated casualties during Exercise Vulcan Phoenix 2024 at Fleet Base West, Western Australia. Story by Lieutenant Tahlia Merigan and Petty Officer Keigan Gunther. Photo by Leading Seaman Rikki-Lea Phillips.

On May 22, Navy teamed up with St John WA, the Department of Fire and Emergency Services, WA Police and Fremantle Ports for the exercise, which tested interagency responses to a critical incident on board a Navy ship.

Exercise Director Petty Officer Chris Murray said the safety of people and the community was front of mind.

“Safety remains Defence’s highest priority and exercises such as this ensure Defence members are aware of their roles and responsibilities during an emergency and are able to work with state emergency services during the response and recover phases,” Petty Officer Murray said.

“This exercise was conducted in a way that is realistic for participants but minimised disruption to local residents and businesses.”

St John WA Area Manager Aaron Dean highlighted the usefulness of the exercise.

“Training is always beneficial, and getting an understanding of how the Fleet Base West medical team works is valuable for interagency cooperation and enables us to use each other’s resources effectively,” he said.

Defence’s long-standing relationship with WA emergency services was strengthened in recent years during responses to bushfires, floods and the COVID-19 pandemic.

District Officer of the Department of Fire and Emergency Services Ryan Murray said the exercise helped develop team cohesion.

“With so many agencies working together, coordination and communication can be challenging,” he said.

“In the unlikely event of a real scenario, the training we conduct here enables us to resolve situations as quickly as possible.”

Exercise Vulcan Phoenix is a regular training activity, with each iteration further developing interagency cooperation.

 

 


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Posted by Brian Hartigan

Managing Editor Contact Publishing Pty Ltd PO Box 3091 Minnamurra NSW 2533 AUSTRALIA

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