Res­cue group plans move to im­prove re­sponse time

Augusta Margaret River Times - - Front Page - De­clan Bush

Au­gusta’s Vol­un­teer Ma­rine Res­cue group is plan­ning a new head­quar­ters at the Au­gusta Boat Har­bour to cut re­sponse times and help house the re­gion’s emer­gency ser­vices.

The sea res­cue team hopes its plan for a shed at the boat har­bour will be ap­proved so it can move its equip­ment and vol­un­teers closer to the wa­ter.

Au­gusta VMR com­man­der Paul Hig­gin­son said it was hoped the new shed would help co-or­di­nate dif­fer­ent res­cue groups.

“The main rea­son is to just get on the wa­ter quicker,” he said.

“The faster we can get to peo­ple . . . ev­ery minute counts.”

Mr Hig­gin­son said heart at­tacks at sea, snapped masts, and sailors run­ning out of fuel were some of the many sce­nar­ios the VMR dealt with.

He said a re­cent shed de­sign would have res­cue equip­ment on the main floor, as well as a ra­dio con­trol room on the se­cond floor, a meet­ing room, and dis­abled ac­cess.

Mr Hig­gin­son said ini­tial de­signs were “nearly there” and the group would soon ap­ply for per­mis­sion from lo­cal au­thor­i­ties.

“Once the plan­ning’s ap­proved we can get the engi­neer’s draw­ings done and then we can go for fund­ing,” he said.

Mr Hig­gin­son said the Au­gusta ma­rina was the only port be­tween Port Geographe and Al­bany, and its $36.4 mil­lion rede­vel­op­ment had helped make the re­gion safer for ocean users.

Pic­ture: De­clan Bush

Au­gusta Vol­un­teer Ma­rine Res­cue mem­bers Tim Miller, com­man­der Paul Hig­gin­son, Keith Ma­cAulay, Nola Hooper, Boat Har­bour man­ager Den­nis Meagher, and Dave Muller are look­ing for­ward to a new head­quar­ters at the ma­rina.

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