News

Training exercise gets units ready to deal with disasters

DIGGING IN: Army reservists Gibson Carragher and Tim Higgins load sandbags during a disaster response exercise at Byron Barracks in Lismore.
DIGGING IN: Army reservists Gibson Carragher and Tim Higgins load sandbags during a disaster response exercise at Byron Barracks in Lismore. Nolan Verheij-Full

EMERGENCY Services personnel from across the Northern Rivers are even better equipped to tackle a natural disaster after Exercise Bellingen wrapped up on Saturday.

The week-long multi-agency disaster response training held at Lismore's Byron Barracks involved more than 50 Army Reservists from the 41st Battalion as well as personnel from the SES, Rural Fire Service, NSW Fire and Rescue and police.

Brigadier Allan Murray, Commander of the army's eighth brigade said the training scenario was based upon a local response to a flood or fire in the region.

He said the focus of Exercise Bellingen was co-ordinating the response to a disaster.

"For the past five days we have been rehearsing an activity in which we would support NSW Government agencies to respond to a disaster situation, primarily a flood or a fire," he said.

"The overall principal is that the NSW Government agencies are the primary responders in the event of a disaster and the army comes in to assist."

Brig Murray said the defence forces were on hand tosupport the community where immediate action is necessary to save lives and prevent extensive damage to animal life, property or the environment.He said members of the eighth brigade had helped combat the 2013 Blue Mountains bushfires and have in the past been deployed to Victoria to battle bushfires.

"We have the skills and the equipment to assist government agencies and we like to maintain them with annual activities like Exercise Bellingen," Brig Murray said.

SES Richmond Tweed region controller Kaylene Jones said Exercise Bellingen had been invaluable for SES volunteers.

"Inter-agency activities like this are critical," she said.

"If we exercise together then when the emergency happens we can perform at a lot higher level."

Fire and Rescue NSW superintendent Greg Lewis said the exercise enhanced the relationships between agencies.

"It's invaluable that all the emergency management arrangements that are in place across the Northern Rivers are practised and planned for," he said.

"Having the army trained in the event of a disaster gives us a further backstop in the event that they need to be called upon."

Topics:  natural disasters



REVEALED: A new Northern Rivers music festival in 2017

Lismore Music Festival co-directors Scott Cooper and Paul Connelly.

Mark March 10 and 11 in your calendar

Heatwave to continue for days as temps top 40 in some areas

Beachgoers cool down at Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast. Temperatures have hit 46 degrees Celsius in parts of outback Queensland today, with a heatwave predicted for the state's central and southern regions.(AAP Image/Dan Peled)

Outback towns scorching under the Friday afternoon sun

Not ten, but fifteen awesome things to do this week

ANNIVERSARY: Charity day party Nudge Nudge Wink Wink has raised almost $20,000 for local organisations in its first year of events.

This busy week we have pretty much every possible event you may want

Local Partners

Ricky Gervais announces first dates of world tour

Ricky Gervais has announced his first world tour in seven years.

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard in 'final stages' of divorce

Depp's outstanding divorce money to be paid over 15 months

REVEALED: A new Northern Rivers music festival in 2017

Lismore Music Festival co-directors Scott Cooper and Paul Connelly.

Mark March 10 and 11 in your calendar

Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher welcome their second child

Mila Kunis won't be naming her second child 'Hawkeye'

First look at Russell Crowe and Tom Cruise in The Mummy

Russell Crowe in a scene from the first teaser trailer for the movie The Mummy.

HOLLYWOOD heavyweights helm serious reboot of action franchise.

Where the Dolphins come from

CREATORS: Brendan Hanley and Darmin Cameron.

Find out the story of the Dolphin Awards got their name

Coast high-flyer's fight back from bankruptcy, $72m debt

Scott Juniper went from millionaire developer to declaring bankruptcy in2012, now he is back on top of his game again with new developments including this one in Coolum.

'Apocalyptic lending storm' causes financial collapse.

How your home can earn you big $$$$ this Christmas

This luxury Twin Waters home rents out over Christmas for more than $6000 a week.

Home owners earning thousands renting out their homes this Christmas

2000 jobs at multi-million dollar Ipswich project

INSIDE: Artist's impressions of the interior of the new Eastern Heights aged care precinct.

Sub-contractors needed to build $15m aged care facility

Iconic beach shack rises from the ashes

Inspired by the Dailys stories on the need for beach shacks, popular Coolum restaurant MyPlace has transformed its inside into a beach shack.

And the iconic 'guitar house' saved for now

New era of healthcare for the Northern Rivers

Page MP Kevin Hogan, Federal Minister for Health Susan Ley, NSW Premier Mike Baird, NSW Minister for Health Jillian Skinner and Lismore MP Thomas George officially opening Stage 3A of the Lismore Base Hospital redevelopment.

New facilities at Lismore Base unveiled by NSW Premier

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!