Capabilities

The ACTSES is a versatile and highly active volunteer emergency service organisation. While its primary role is to respond to incidents involving floods and storms, its members also provides crucial support and assistance to other emergency service organisations.

Storm Preparation and Response

Preparing for and responding to storm damage is one of the most frequent operational tasks undertaken by the ACTSES.  This includes:

  • educating the community about the danger of storms including how to prepare for, respond to and recover from them
  • warning the community of impending storms
  • ensuring the safety of residents who are impacted by storms
  • making residences and businesses safe
  • preventing further damage by erecting tarpaulins, and undertaking temporary repairs
  • providing residents with access to their doors and driveways by clearing fallen trees and other debris

Flood Preparation and Response

ACTSES is the lead emergency service in preparing for and responding to floods.  This includes:

  • educating the community about the danger of floods including how to prepare for, respond to and recover from them
  • controlling and contributing to the ACT flood response, including:
    • warning the community of impending flooding
    • leading a multi-agency response
    • evacuating residents where necessary
    • pumping out basements and other flooded structures
    • assisting with rescue
Storm damage operation

Storm damage operation

ACTSES operates two flood boats.  While their function is primarily flood rescue, they may be used for virtually any water-based support as required. If large-scale flooding occurs, it is likely to extend across the border into surrounding NSW, and for this reason their use in this type of operation is most likely to be in support of the NSW SES.

Other ACTSES Tasks

  • Ambulance Support Volunteers supporting the ACT Ambulance Service (ACTAS) during mass casualty incidents and major events
  • Land-based missing person and evidence searches in support of the Australian Federal Police (AFP)
  • Air search in support of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA)
  • Urban search and rescue in support of ACT Fire and Rescue (ACT F&R)
  • The provision of portable lighting towers during emergencies
  • A range of support at community and other events.