Australia has officially accepted Canada’s request for emergency firefighting assistance and is sending an extra 95 personnel to Vancouver on Monday. Seven Australians are already in Canada liaising with authourities, like the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Service (CIFFS).
Australia and Canada have a long history of supporting each other over at least 15 years, with Canadian firefighting aircraft heading south for Australian Summers when it is a North American Winter.
This month Canada has experienced some of the worst wildfires in decades. Help has been coming from many countries with United States and Mexican firefighters already assisting weary Canadian teams.
The State of Victoria is taking the lead in coordinating the national response from Australia fire services. This is being done by Emergency Management Victoria, led by Commissioner Craig Lapsley.
Western Australian firefighters today left Perth today to join their eastern state counterparts, expected to depart on tomorrow (July 13, 2015). We understand the numbers are fluid, however EMV today confirmed an expected deployment of 102 Australian experts (seven in place and 95 departing this week).
Victoria (44%) is leading the deployment of manpower, followed by NSW (31%), Western Australia (12%), ACT (5%) Tasmania (4%), Queensland (3%) and South Australia (1%) contributing the initial taskforce. Deployment is expected to approximately six weeks.
From the various state agencies and news reports, we understand the integrated deployment consists of the follow state fire services:
|State / Territory||Staff||Department / Service
|ACT||5||ACT Rural Fire Service|
|NSW||13||NSW Rural Fire Service|
|NSW||12||NSW Parks & Wildlife Service|
|NSW||3||Fire & Rescue NSW|
|QLD||3||Queensland Fire & Rescue Service (QFRS)|
|SA||1||SA Country Fire Service|
|TAS||2||Tasmania Fire Service|
|TAS||2||Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service|
|VIC||21||VIC Department of Environment, Land, Water & Planning (DELWP)|
|VIC||9||VIC Country Fire Authority (CFA)|
|VIC||1||VIC Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB)|
|VIC||1||Emergency Management Victoria (EMV)|
|VIC||1||VIC Department of Economic Dev, Jobs, Transport & Resources|
|WA||7||WA Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES)|
|WA||5||WA Department of Parks & Wildlife (DPW)|
The New Zealand Fires Service is reported to have committed 16 firefighting personnel.