PM praises SES volunteers and urges Aussies to join
PRIME Minister Scott Morrison urged Australians to "get involved with local emergency services" when he visited the State Emergency Service headquarters in Goonellabah on Thursday morning.
Mr Morrison was accompanied by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Minister Police and Emergency Services, David Elliott, senior emergency services personnel and local politicians as he attended a briefing at the SES Northern Rivers HQ.
Mr Morrison was in town to view flood damage and declared the Northern Rivers a natural disaster area due to the havoc caused by severe storms, heavy rainfall and flooding since last Friday
Surrounded by SES volunteers, firefighters and police officers, when asked if he would encourage people to join their local emergency services organisation such as the SES, Mr Morison said 'yes'.
"I think this is a great form of service," he said.
"Our regional communities have done amazingly well (through COVID-19) and this is because of the amazing people behind me."
Mr Morrison said joining their local emergency services organisation, is "a reflection of the Australian community spirit."
Earlier, SES Northern Zone Commander Steve Tobin gave Mr Morrison a comprehensive briefing on the current situation on the challenges facing the region.
Mr Tobin said the SES volunteers were going a marvellous job in heavy weather.
"Yesterday at 10am we had six jobs to go to and by 1pm we had over 100," he said.
"We were called to many rescues in floodwaters."
But Mr Tobin also thanked people who had come forward with details of rainfall and infrastructure damage.
"The community has been really good about intelligence (about flooding) back to us," he said.
SES NSW Commissioner Carlene York said she was pleased that the majority of people had been following evacuation orders and flood advice.