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NSW gifts fire trucks to the Solomon Islands

Published: 26th June 2017

Fire & Rescue NSW (FRNSW) has today gifted three fire trucks and equipment to the Solomon Islands to support firefighting operations in the country.

FRNSW Commissioner Paul Baxter QSO officially handed over the trucks to Her Excellency Fiona Indu, Acting High Commissioner of Solomon Islands to Australia, in a ceremony at FRNSW headquarters in Greenacre.

Commissioner Baxter said the trio of trucks will leave Sydney this week for the Solomon Islands, providing a much-needed boost to firefighters in capital Honiara and the country’s larger provinces.

“These fire and rescue vehicles were due to be decommissioned, but their meticulous service histories, low kilometres and water tanker capabilities make them ideal for use in the Solomon Islands,” he said.

The trucks are Class 1 Tankers, multi-purpose off road tankers that can carry more water than urban fire engines.

FRNSW has also gifted firefighting equipment to accompany the trucks, including 50 self-contained breathing apparatus kits and two mobile air compressors.

Commissioner Baxter said the decision to gift the trucks and equipment followed a visit by FRNSW leaders to the Solomon Islands earlier this year to inspect firefighting facilities and assess future requirements.

“FRNSW has been part of the Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Islands (RAMSI) for the past 15 years, training local firefighters, mentoring station commanders and fire chiefs, and providing much-needed firefighting equipment,” he said.

“At the start of this year, FRNSW advisors also helped plan, design and facilitate the opening of a new fire station in Honiara.

“Firefighting operations in the Solomon Islands have advanced significantly over the last 15 years and the addition of these three fire trucks will further improve the country’s emergency response capabilities.”

Speaking after today’s official handover, Ms Indu thanked FRNSW on behalf of the Solomon Islands government.

“These trucks and equipment will go a long way in adding value to the services that our fire and rescue division provides to the people of the Solomon Islands,” she said.