260,000 sandbags… 16,992 meals…
240 trucks and 4WDs
NOTHING touches the soul more than to see communities banding together in a time of disaster and during the recent flood crisis which swept the region, the masses of volunteers, local government and members of local communities who worked day and night to aid those effected, was nothing short of staggering.
An enormous amount of manpower was exercised to provide and deliver over 260,000 sandbags, serve over 16,992 meals and to deploy 244 trucks and 4 wheel drives as well as 18 flood boats.
As well as council members, People Supporting People, the Shepparton Search and Rescue Squad, State Emergency Service (SES), prisoners from Dhurringile Prison, the Department of Sustainability and Environment, the Army and the thousands of locals who chipped in to lend a hand, an estimated 430 plus CFA volunteers from across District 22 worked day and night for eight days, local and metropolitan police were called in from as far as Melbourne and on Monday, March 12 alone, over 500 SES volunteers came to the aid of effected communities.
Rostered Duty Officer, Shane Sutton of the CFA was among the masses who reached out to help the communities affected by the recent flooding across the region. “I was coordinating from the CFA’s perspective to address the requests coming from the SES,” he said.
President of the Shepparton Search and Rescue Squad, Steve Dempster said, “The hours were long and it was pretty tough work. I feel for all of those within the communities who have been affected.”
Commander of Shepparton Search and Rescue, Gary Lovell said, “We had crews out there nearly 24 hours a day for the first week.
“We’ve been put on standby during the recovery process, which has been initiated but we are on call for any emergencies which may emerge,” Gary said.
While many of the crews are still working hard on the clean-up efforts, countless words and sentiments of appreciation are ringing out from the hearts and minds of all communities who would have otherwise endured a much worse outcome and an undying gratitude will remain for all who have helped to lessen the impact such a disaster has brought upon the region.