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Committees and other strategic alliances

State Emergency Management Committee and State Rescue Board

The State Emergency Management Committee (SEMC) has a responsibility to identify emergency resources from both within and outside the State, and to plan how they will be allocated and coordinated.

We contribute to the SEMC where the we have responsibilities as the combat or lead agency including:

  • Fires in the urban domain
  • Land-based and inland waterways hazardous materials incidents
  • Specified general land rescue
  • Urban search and rescue (USAR), and
  • Chemical, biological and radiological (CBR) incidents


We work closely with the NSW Police, Health NSW, the Ambulance Service of NSW and the Australian Defence Forces in developing policy and procedures and implementing training exercises to enhance CBR and USAR capability development and ensure interoperability at any incidents of terrorist attack. The FRNSW is a member of the NSW Government's Chief Executive Officers Counter Terrorism Committee and contributes to the Cabinet Counter Terrorism Subcommittee.

Fire Services Joint Standing Committee

The Fire Services Joint Standing Committee Act 1998 [external link] established a committee, with equal representation from the FRNSW and the NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS), to plan and implement coordinated urban and rural fire services.

The Fire Services Joint Standing Committee and its subcommittees provide a forum for consultation and cooperation between the FRNSW, the RFS, the Fire & Rescue NSW Employees Union and the Rural Fire Service Association to:

  • Develop strategic plans for service delivery and infrastructure
  • Review jurisdictional boundaries
  • Minimise duplication of services delivered to the community, and
  • Minimise duplication of training activities and community education programs.

Bush Fire Coordinating Committee

The Bush Fire Coordinating Committee, established under the Rural Fires Act 1997 [external link], provides a forum for consultation and cooperation between the RFS, the FRNSW, State Forests, the National Parks and Wildlife Service, Local Government Association, Shires Association, Rural Fire Service Association, Police, Department of Conservation and Environment, Nature Conservation Council, NSW Farmers Association and Department of Community Services to:

  • Plan bushfire prevention and coordinate bushfire fighting
  • Advise the Commissioner of the RFS on bushfire prevention, mitigation and coordinated bushfire suppression
  • Report to the Minister for Emergency Services on any matters relating to the prevention and suppression of bushfires
  • Enter into arrangements with any public authority concerning the reduction of bushfire hazards
  • Give consideration to the principles of ecologically sustainable development described in section 6 (2) of the Protection of the Environment Administration Act 1991 [external link] in undertaking any activity that affects the environment, and
  • Establish Bush Fire Management Committees within rural fire districts or other relevant parts of NSW.

Memorandums of Understanding

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) exists with the RFS to ensure a complementary and comprehensive fire service for the community of NSW. The agreement recognises the complementary urban and rural focus of the respective services and the FRNSW's additional rescue and statewide hazmat roles.

85 Mutual Aid Agreements (MAA) at a local level are further enhancing interagency communication and community safety. The MAAs enable sharing of resources and the provision of a better service to the community.

MOUs are also in place with the: