ESA Station Upgrade and Relocation Strategy is about preparing for the future needs of the ACT as the city grows. A number of studies have been undertaken on behalf of the ESA focusing on ambulance and fire station locations, sites and facilities. They address where emergency services should be located to provide optimal coverage to the ACT community into the future, as current locations were not planned to take account of the future needs of the ACT’s population growth and demand shifts.
The selection of appropriate locations is a technical exercise, involving complex modelling based on the anticipated location of important hazards and risks and the coverage interrelationship between all locations for a service. Ambulance and fire services are required to meet prescribed response time targets for treating incidents; therefore one of the critical components for locations is travel time. Locations for emergency services are strongly interrelated and the movement of just one location affects the coverage performance of all other locations. For this reason, ambulance and fire services location assessments must be done at the ‘whole of ACT level’. There is little room for arbitrary relocations for individual locations or local districts.
One of the most important parameters for determining locations of new ambulance and fire stations is being sited on or very close to arterial roads, to facilitate speedy multidirectional egress in the endeavour to save lives, property and the environment.
Many existing facilities no longer provide the best conditions to support the operations of the services. Improved functionality and design will help to maximise the efficiency and effectiveness of emergency services operations, and their ability to respond to the needs of the Canberra community.
Implementation of the Strategy will better position the ESA to save lives, property and the environment.