Building opening fires up Redland Bay SES Group

Redland Bay SES Group is now better equipped to respond to emergencies following the official opening of its new purpose-built home base (on Saturday 29 May 2021).

Redland City Mayor and Local Disaster Management Group chair Karen Williams said the $1.735 million facility at Redland Bay Business Park was the result of a long-term plan to better equip and streamline SES services for all Redlands Coast residents.

“Now, with a well-equipped base, Redland Bay SES Group can provide a more cohesive service to the southern part of the city,” Cr Williams said.

“Our Redland City SES crews are known for being among the best in the state and we’ve been reminded of that throughout the year, particularly during the March rain event when they responded to a total of 131 call-outs for help during a 24-hour period.

“But the requirement that all mainland crews be tasked out of Cleveland for a unit response meant there was a 40 to 50-minute turnaround time for those working in the southern end of the city.

“This new facility means the community can have confidence that help is closer to hand when it’s needed.”

Cr Mark Edwards, Cr Julie Talty, Mayor Karen Williams, QFES Acting Assistant Commissioner Brad Commens and Member for Redlands Kim Richards.

Cr Williams said the building on Jardine Drive was bought by Council last year and had a floor space of 512 sqm on a 1250 sqm block.

“That’s substantially larger than the shed used to house Redland Bay SES Group at Weinam Creek,” she said.

“The space has allowed for a fitout that includes an extra control room, training room, communications room, a staging area and parking onsite, as well as a kitchen, toilets and showers, and a storeroom.

“The Redland Bay operations will also provide extra support to the Southern Moreton Bay Islands SES Group and the building can be used as a staging area for incoming crews if required.”

Division 6 Councillor Julie Talty said a snapshot of activities carried out by Redland City SES crews since January indicated the facility would be well used.

“In one of the recent nine land searches conducted, Redland City SES led a search involving hundreds of SES members over a three-week period looking for a missing elderly man,” Cr Talty said.

“There have been 216 storm damage tasks recorded since January, as well as deployment of our local SES teams to other parts of Australia to help with disaster responses.

“In March, a four-person team from Redland City SES joined the taskforce sent to Taree to assist with the NSW flood response, while in April members were sent to Western Australia to assist with storm damage operations that resulted from Cyclone Seroja.”

State Member for Redlands Kim Richards said: “Our Redlands SES Unit does an incredible job keeping our community safe and we are very fortunate to have one of Queensland’s most highly awarded units.

“This new facility will deliver the Redland Bay SES Group with the space, equipment and environment they need to continue to support our growing region.

“It is a great partnership by Redland City Council and the Queensland Government supporting our Redlands SES frontline personnel into the future to keep Redlanders safe.”

Cr Williams said Redland City SES Unit had 169 active members, 53 of them from the Redland Bay Group.

“It’s wonderful that we can now provide a more fitting home base suited to the excellent frontline work they do,” she said.

“The facility will also include warehouse space for vehicle and equipment storage and it’s large enough to house all the SES vehicles, boats, trailers and equipment.

“There will be areas to wash down vehicles, to do basic equipment maintenance, and there is a lockable storage area for portable items such as chainsaws, generators, ropes and harnesses.”

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services provided a grant of $75,000 towards the fit-out of the building, and Redland Emergency Service Volunteer Association committed $40,000 towards the fit-out, furniture and fittings.