The Riddells Creek Fire Brigade holds training for all members every Sunday morning from 9:30am to 12:30pm. In addition, we meet on the last Tuesday of each month from 7:30pm – 9:30pm. People wishing to join the brigade are encouraged to come along to these sessions to introduce themselves and to meet the team here at the Riddells Creek Fire Brigade. Brigade monthly meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month from 8:00pm onwards.
All operational members of the Brigade are required to undergo “Recruit Training” prior to becoming full “emergency responders” with the Brigade.
What does this mean? Before a new member is permitted to respond to an emergency without a qualified member guiding them, each member must complete training which is centered around the following skills:
- Understanding wildfire behavior
- Applying wildfire suppression strategies and tactics
- Communications & radio operation
- Personal protection techniques and fire-ground safety
- Map reading
Having completed this training, members are encouraged to participate in regular brigade training each Sunday, and may also go on to more specialised training courses such as driver training, breathing apparatus and First Aid courses.
All training is aligned with national competency standards established by the Public Safety Training Package and the Country Fire Authority. This means that all training we undertake is recognised in other industries throughout Australia. Why does this sound so serious? Because every time we respond to an emergency we are placing Brigade Members at risk in our pursuit to “Protect life and property”. Fortunately through training and experience we reduce the risk and guard our members’ safety.
You may see the Brigade training on Sundays as they drive around Riddells Creek, and conduct exercises around the town and surrounding area. Exercises are designed to simulate real situations and could involve chasing witches hats in the paddocks (grass fire simulation), wearing protective splash suits and breathing apparatus around town (hazardous chemical spill) or entering buildings with limited vision (smoke filled structure fires).
In addition, the Brigade gains valuable training experience through burn-offs conducted in the Spring and early Summer months each year, and in late-Autumn. These activities not only provide training but also perform a community service by removing fuel from around the township prior to the fire danger season.