Goondiwindi's 'vital' service gets new vehicle

GRC Councillor Rick Kearney and Goondiwindi SES Group Leader, Jamie Russ.
GRC Councillor Rick Kearney and Goondiwindi SES Group Leader, Jamie Russ.

The Goondiwindi Regional State Emergency Service Unit have secured a new vehicle fully equipped to meet the needs of the service.

Goondiwindi Regional Council matched funding from the SES Non-Recurrent Subsidy Program (SESNRS) to secure the purchase of the replacement vehicle and for modification to meet the SES's specialised needs.

The new Mitsubishi Triton Dual Cab 4WD will replace the SES's previous vehicle: a 2000-model Toyota Hilux that had clocked up 140,000 km on the dial.

Goondiwindi Regional Council Councillor Rick Kearney said programs such as the SESNRS provide invaluable support to councils across the state.

"The SES are your typical example of ordinary people doing extraordinary things," Cr Kearney said.

"They are an integral part of the local community and provide for our essential support services during emergency and disaster events.

"Having programs like this in place to support those services makes the world of difference."

Local Controller of the Goondiwindi Regional SES Unit, Ann McGlashan said the continued upgrade of equipment was essential to keep the service running smoothly.

"It's really important that we have equipment to suit our needs, it's better for the whole team," Ann McGlashan said.

"Council has been very good to deal with and we've really gone forward since the amalgamation. They've helped us along and really helped us with things we couldn't have done otherwise."

The new vehicle will make sure there's room for more volunteers on the job. Ultimately, said Ann McGlashan, it's the volunteers who are the lifeblood of the service.

"[The SES] is like a second family, it really is. We call ourselves the Orange Family," she said.

"It's very rewarding. You get to go out and do things for the community and meet new people."

Since joining the SES as a member in 2006, Ann McGlashan went on to become Local Controller of Inglewood and Texas and she is now Local Controller of the Goondiwindi Region.

"We're always looking for volunteers," Ann McGlashan said. "People get a lot out of it - we offer nationally accredited courses such as first aid which you can then take back to your employer, or which can help you get on to find a job."

"People can pop-in to training sessions to get an idea of what we're all about," Ann McGlashan said. Training sessions are 6pm every Wednesday at the Goondiwindi Aerodrome.

If you would like more information on becoming a volunteer in the SES, please contact Mrs Ann McGlashan, Local Controller of the Goondiwindi Regional SES Unit on 0428 067 744.