Technology focus on firefighter safety

NSW Government

A new technology package will be deployed across NSW to reinforce firefighting efforts and safety.

A Fire and Rescue NSW vehicle which carries the Remotely Piloted Aircraft System that provides real time images during a bushfire emergency.

The ‘connected firefighter’ package is a $57.4 million investment as part of the NSW Government’s response to the Independent Bushfire Inquiry following the Black Summer Bushfires of 2019/20.

The package includes:

  • Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS), or drones which provide images and data from incidents in real-time, to assist firefighters with incident planning.
  • Cell on Wheels (CoWs), which are mobile modules that are equipped with communications technology and provide power for extended periods in remote parts of the state without coverage.
  • Upgrades to Fire and Rescue NSW Mobile Command Centres for communications between incident management teams and firefighters.
  • Vehicle as a Node (VaaNs), vehicles that have a built-in Wi-Fi hub to provide mobile 4G network in remote locations where satellite connection is limited.

Police and Emergency Services Minister David Elliott said that the NSW Government is providing record funding towards initiatives which are bolstering our community safety.

“What is apparent is that our emergency services are entering a tech boom, one which rightly puts NSW ahead of the pack this bushfire season,” Mr Elliott said.

“These assets will ensure our first responders are safe as they enter dangerous and volatile fire grounds to protect their communities.”

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