Eighteen (18) SES volunteers from both metropolitan and regional units walked up to 20kms a day on foot in the search for missing hunter Reg Foggerdy.
SES Association President Gordon Hall said the volunteers from Bassendean, Mundaring, Kalamunda, Canning, Cockburn, Belmont, Norseman and Kalgoorlie excelled despite the extreme conditions and difficult terrain they faced.
“These amazing women and men were dropped by helicopter into otherwise inaccessible areas near Laverton and conducted their land search in searing heat,” Mr Hall said.
“They were up at 4am and didn’t rest until after dark, sleeping under the same stars that they all hoped were still visible to Mr Foggerdy.”
“Fortunately, through the incredible combined effort from these dedicated and highly skilled SES members, WA Police and the team from the Tropicana Minesite, Mr Foggerdy was found alive after being missing for six days.”
“The SESVA is extremely proud to represent every State Emergency Service volunteer in Western Australia and this is one example where their professionalism, dedication and high degree of expertise has contributed to a positive outcome worthy of celebration.”
“However, as the organisation that is consistently working to improve the safety and support for the SES volunteers, the SESVA also needs to send the message that everyone travelling in remote areas need to be fully prepared for extreme and unexpected conditions.”
“Our members and other emergency services are extremely good at what they do, but we all have to remember that SES volunteers often leave their homes and families to put themselves in harms’ way to protect others.”
“It is extremely important that we all do our bit to be responsible – especially when in dangerous territory – to ensure our service is never taken for granted,” Mr Hall concluded.