Eight SES trainees have just had their training wheels removed after passing their assessments over the weekend, November 3-4.
The training process can take up to a year but it is all smiles for the group as they are headed into the on-call roster for the local unit.
Mark Anderson, unit deputy training officer, said the trainees did all they needed to do in order to pass.
“Depending on how fast they get through the course content it can take anywhere between six and 12 months to get qualified and get on the call-out roster,” Mr Anderson said.
“We usually have two recruitment drives each year and from that we get a number of volunteers who sign up and get qualified.
“It is great that we now have an extra eight volunteers who will be able to help us over the peak storm season we are coming into.
“For the last few years at Christmas we have been inundated with storms over the holiday period and having more volunteers is always better.”
Mr Anderson said as well as needing to pass the storm and water course the group needed to obtain a first aid certificate and complete the fundamentals and communications course.
“It is a bit of a process but in Port Macquarie we are the registered accredited rescue emergency service for land emergencies so all our volunteers have to be highly trained to attend all our calls,” he said.
“Our core combat role is helping in storms, floods and tsunamis but our unit is also a qualified rescue unit and we attend a whole range of other emergencies as well.
“Now the trainees are qualified in the basics they can now work to specialise in different areas in the coming years.”
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