The NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) is better prepared for the upcoming fire season after the opening of a new South West Slopes Fire Control Centre (FCC) at Harden today.
The new $6.1 million purpose-built centre was opened by police and emergency services minister David Elliott, who was joined by Cootamundra MP Steph Cooke and acting deputy fire commissioner Peter McKechnie for the ceremony.
Mr Elliott said the centre was built to provide the south west slopes district with a modern fit-for-purpose building to deal with complex and large emergency events.
"While the previous centre has served well, I am confident this new state-of-the-art facility will prove an invaluable tool in managing fires in the south west slopes and will be welcomed by the 30,000 residents who live in the district," he said.
Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said it is crucial RFS volunteers have the best possible facilities.
"The new facility has the technology, space and functionality for up to 50 people to work together to lead and support emergency events, increase the level of safety and keep the community informed," Ms Cooke said.
"Our volunteers go above and beyond for their communities. I am so proud they have this facility to support their crucial work."
Acting deputy commissioner, Peter McKechnie, said the centre was welcomed by the whole community as well as around 2700 volunteers within the NSW RFS Brigades in the south west slopes.
"While the old council-managed FCC is still functional as a basic administration facility, it is over 50 years old and lacks greatly as a modern emergency control facility," he said.
In a further boost to the region, Mr Elliott announced an additional eight mitigation roles, forming two crews in the Cowra region.
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