SES mem­bers take long view


HEATH­COTE SES mem­bers re­ceived long ser­vice awards in Bendigo on Septem­ber 8.

Six mem­bers from the lo­cal group re­ceived five, 10 and 30 years’ ser­vice recog­ni­tion to the Heath­cote area.

Through floods, storms, road ac­ci­dents and res­cues, they’ve been one part of the com­mit­ted emer­gency services in town.

Steve John­son, one of the found­ing mem­bers of the group, was recog­nised for 30 years of ser­vice.

He said through­out his time in the SES, he’s seen a lot of changes for the bet­ter.

“When we started we towed a trailer with a crow­bar, stretcher, hand-op­er­ated hy­draulic tools and towed it with our per­sonal cars,” he said.

The group was then able to pur­chase the jaws of life after a road ac­ci­dent ac­cred­i­ta­tion and up­graded their com­mu­ni­ca­tion equip­ment.

When it comes to a pinch, the group knows ex­actly what to do. Steve said with more re­cent road safety cam­paigns there has been a de­crease in calls to road ac­ci­dents.

“With the fa­tigue cam­paigns and safety bar­ri­ers we’ve gone from about one ac­ci­dent a week to one ev­ery few months,” he said.

Steve said along with tech­no­log­i­cal ad­vances, the Heath­cote SES has gone from strength to strength.

“Mem­bers are on the in­crease. Be­fore we be­came the SES, we had about 30 mem­bers and then dipped to 10 after that,” he said.

“But now we have about 20 mem­bers who are quite ac­tive. It’s a good group and there’s a good so­cial side.

“A lot of our mem­bers stick around. They’ve been trained and are ac­cred­ited so they stay.”

Heath­cote SES long ser­vice award re­cip­i­ents — Steve Kern (five years), Daniel Du­mi­gan (five), Linda Le Busque (10), Steve John­son (30), Marc Pitt (10) and Peter Zenz (five).

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