SES an in­te­gral part of re­lief

Isis Town and Country - - Kolan News -

THERE is some­thing about the 20-strong Gin Gin SES that feels more like a fam­ily than a vol­un­teer emer­gency unit.

The SES is an oft-over­looked cog in the emer­gency re­sponse ve­hi­cle, but the group, led in Gin Gin by lo­cal con­troller Kel­lie Bol­stad, is an in­te­gral part to re­lief ef­forts.

As Trop­i­cal Cy­clone Mar­cia ap­proached the Capricorn Coast, the SES filled and de­liv­ered sand­bags and other sup­plies to res­i­dents in Horse Camp, Gin Gin and on the way to Mt Perry.

Oliver Lin­den­berg, 16, and Lane Wal­ters, 17, left school early on Thurs­day to help.

Oliver joined the SES last year, and Lane suited up in the familiar or­ange uni­form ear­lier this month.

“Who would’ve thought we’d have an earth­quake and a cy­clone in my first week,” Lane said.

Ben Den­ner­ley has been with the SES and Ru­ral Fire Ser­vice for sev­eral years. Tony Stephensen, 54, has seen his fair share of in­ci­dents.

Mr Den­ner­ley de­scribed his in­volve­ment with vol­un­teer emer­gency ser­vices as a fam­ily tra­di­tion.

“My whole fam­ily’s been in it,” he said. “It’s about help­ing the com­mu­nity.”

On Fri­day they were back at the de­pot ready to re­spond, with vol­un­teers tak­ing calls from con­cerned res­i­dents around the dis­trict.

The main con­cern was whether to stay put or move out in the face of pre­dicted flood­ing.

Com­mu­ni­ties sur­round­ing Gin Gin were left iso­lated and res­i­dents stranded as a re­sult of the 2013 flood.

There was con­cern the pre­dicted heavy rain could cause a sim­i­lar sit­u­a­tion.

The Bur­nett catch­ment copped some heavy falls but it was much less than ex­pected, while wide­spread flood­ing af­fected the North Bur­nett.

To join the SES, phone Kel­lie Bol­stad on 4157 2525 or send mail to PO Box 420, Gin Gin, 4671.

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