9 February 2018
Life Saving Victoria has a presence in Victoria’s State Control Centre, providing a rotating number of staff to act as Emergency Management Liaison Officers, including Life Saving Victoria State Duty Officer Kane Treloar.
Kane says being Emergency Management Liaison Officer requires a solid understanding of the organisation, good communication skills, and the ability to work well in a team.
“Emergency Management Liaison Officers are responsible for feeding information from their organisations into the intelligence desk to ensure resources are deployed where they are needed most,” he said.
“For Life Saving Victoria, this means providing real time information about attendance and rescue trends at beaches and waterways across Victoria, and ensuring we have the staff and equipment in place to support these numbers.”
This collaborative approach meant that in late January when an Ambulance Victoria liaison working in the State Control Centre could quickly alert Life Saving Victoria to 2000 Midsumma Festival-goers moving onto St Kilda beach.
“Thanks to this information, we moved several jetski lifeguards from Williamstown to St Kilda to provide a greater presence on the beach,” Kane said.
“Fortunately, the crowds acted responsibly and no rescues were necessary.”
The State Control Centre has also given Life Saving Victoria another platform for its water safety messages which is especially important with a significant number of deaths by drowning in Victoria.
“This has been our worst summer on record, so anything we can do to reduce this number and improve the safety of our community, the better,” Kane says.
“Our message is simple – always swim between the flags, at patrolled beaches and waterways, and avoid rips.”