Emergency management update

Thursday, 5 October 2017

The City takes its emergency management responsibilities very seriously.

We adhere to Victoria’s Emergency Management Act that states the first priority in any incident is primacy of life – including the safety and wellbeing of our staff and our community.

Under that Act, the lead responders to an emergency are Victoria Police, the CFA, the SES, or the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning – depending on the nature of the incident.

The role of all Victorian councils – including the City of Greater Geelong – is to work with and support other emergency agencies to provide relief and recovery services to impacted individuals or communities.

In addition, all City staff who manage and work in our public spaces are well-versed in first-aid, emergency evacuation and safety procedures that are appropriate to their venues, programs and responsibilities.

For example, we have emergency plans to quickly contact parents of children at our childcare centres, while all City buildings have staff safety wardens who run regular emergency evacuation drills.

To gain an events permit from the City, all public outdoor events organisers must submit an emergency management plan that satisfies our public safety requirements, and is proportionate to the risks of their activity and location.

We set our public safety requirements in consultation with Victoria Police and other relevant agencies, via the Events Multi-Agency Working Group (established by the City in 2005).

We are guided by the Commonwealth’s national framework, Australia’s Strategy for Protecting Crowded Places from Terrorism 2017.

We have also added a new Events Security Working Group to focus on the risks and mitigation options for a range of emerging public safety challenges.

When responding to an emergency, our experienced emergency management team follow a comprehensive Municipal Emergency Management Plan: a plan required of all Victorian councils.

Our emergency management team has strong links with other multi-agency emergency services, and can quickly respond to support residents in an emergency – as shown during the recent Drysdale petrol station fire and evacuation in September.