Premier Gladys Berejiklian said more than 340 fire trucks and vehicles are being built and upgraded for the NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) and Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) following the devastating 2019/20 bushfires.
“This program is part of our ongoing commitment to ensuring our emergency services personnel and volunteers have the best possible vehicles and equipment when responding to emergencies across the state,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“The RFS is working with 19 local businesses to build and upgrade vehicles, creating new jobs across the state including in the Central West, Riverina, Hunter, Mid North Coast, Sutherland Shire and Hawkesbury.”
Minister for Police and Emergency Services David Elliott said the unprecedented nature of the 2019/20 fire season resulted in a considerable number of the firefighting fleet suffering damage or total loss.
“Last year the NSW Government announced an additional $45 million investment to enhance our firefighting capability. This funding included $34.4 million to almost double the annual new appliance build, which will help protect life, property and support our emergency management personnel,” Mr Elliott said.
“As part of the NSW Government’s RFS fleet enhancement and refurbishment program 23 new and refurbished trucks have already been deployed to some of the most at risk areas across the state.”
NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) Commissioner Rob Rogers AFSM said the investment in the fleet program would ensure brigades are equipped to best protect their communities.
“Ensuring our members have the most modern equipment and resources to protect local communities has been, and will remain, a key priority,” Commissioner Rogers said.
“This program will enable brigades to continue their outstanding work and the updates and new technology will ensure our firefighters are safe while undertaking their important roles.”
Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) received an additional $5.7 million for 10 new tankers to bolster their bush firefighting fleet.
FRNSW Commissioner Paul Baxter said the new equipment would help firefighters where it was needed most – on the frontlines.
“We stand with our NSW RFS colleagues in welcoming this new equipment so that our firefighters are as prepared as they can be to meet the constant threats posed by bushfires, other fires and emergencies across NSW,” Commissioner Baxter said.
“We remain prepared for anything, anywhere, anytime in protecting the NSW community and this new equipment will add to our preparedness.”