20 October 2006

Pratt moves to censure Corbell over ancient fire trucks

| Kerces
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Yesterday in the Legislative Assembly Opposition spokesman for things in uniforms Steve Pratt tried to censure Simon Corbell over the state of our fire trucks.

Mr Pratt said the Emergency Services minister has failed in the administration of his portfolio.

Apparently a memo was sent to all fire brigade volunteers earlier this month which set out the number of vehicles owned by the Rural Fire Service and their condition.

“Identified on the table [attached to the memo] are 54 vehicles, of which 21 now exceed the replacement age profile based on national standards, and of this 21 vehicles, 14 exceed the agreed life span by more than 25 percent,” Mr Pratt said.

The Government refused to table this memo and also refused to allow the Opposition to table it, thus refusing to make it publicly available to anyone who wanted a look.

Mr Pratt said that although Mr Corbell may have inherited some of the problems in the Emrgency Services portfolio, some of them are of his own making.

“Recent debacles show that he has not only failed to acquire the necessary knowledge and facts of the current situation facing our Emergency Services, but he also has no idea of the real state of our bushfire fighting capabilities,” Mr Pratt said.

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why are our fire engines yellow ?

Vic Bitterman4:59 pm 20 Oct 06

Well done Pratt.

corbell will, as usual, squeal his way out of it

I may never say this again, but, by jingo, the Pratt actually has a point. Well, not in trying to pass a censure motion (they’re timewasters that oppositions consistently fails in), but the government should be incredibly embarassed about this one.

Now, if the Pratt can only refrain from being idiotic for another two years, I may even consider him appropriate material for a government position…

More importantly is to evaluate what the service has and what it needs to do its job effectively.
At a minimum it requires a 5 heavy truck strike team it can deploy for support interstate.
It requires another 5 heavy truck team to provide minimum operational cover in the ACT.
Why do you need to be able to provide support interstate? Because it does not matter how you add up what is available in the ACT it is insufficient to control a major fire in the ACT and you cannot expect other states to come to your aid if you cannot repay the favour.

You only need to look at the number of tankers NSW RFS and Vic CFA used in the last couple of weeks to be aware of how limited the ACT services are.

So you need at least 10 late model heavy tankers.

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