The Emergency Is Fake But The Response Is Real

A virtual emergency involving a large truck pile up and a hazardous chemical spill was simulated in Melbourne today to test councils’ abilities to deal with large numbers of injured people and mass evacuations.

Minister for Emergency Services Jane Garrett said the ‘aftermath’ scenario involved more than 200 staff from local councils and emergency services who worked together to provide relief to hundreds of volunteer patients.

This year’s exercise was hosted by the cities of Yarra and Moreland, and included emergency personnel from 14 agencies including the MFB, SES and Victoria Police.

The realistic scenario saw hundreds of injured or affected ‘victims’ converge on two emergency relief centres in Moreland and Collingwood.

Ms Garrett said these types of exercises gave the community confidence in the ability of authorities to manage a crisis.

The annual training exercise is designed to help councils work across boundaries during disasters and put their skills and knowledge to the test.

The lessons learned in these simulations equip emergency services to deal with all types of disasters.

Councils from the North West Metro Region supported the exercise including Banyule, Brimbank, Darebin, Hobsons Bay, Hume, Maribyrnong, Melbourne, Melton, Moreland, Moonee Valley, Nillumbik, Whittlesea, Wyndham.

Co-ordinated by the North West Metro Region Emergency Management Collaboration, the event will inform and improve emergency management plans, systems and processes in the future.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Emergency Services Jane Garrett

This simulated emergency gives our councils and emergency services the opportunity to work together and put their skills to the test.”

“This is about improving the way we provide relief to people who have been affected by a major disaster and making the community safer in the future.”

Disaster can strike at any time so we need to be prepared across organisations and boundaries to ensure that we have robust plans to place to respond quickly.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Local Government Natalie Hutchins

“Local councils play an important role in managing emergency situations. Training exercises like these help ensure that staff are ready to respond if called on.”

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