The ninth Mining Emergency Response Competition (MERC) officially kicked off today and will run until Sunday 24 November at Langley Park in Perth.
More than 20 teams from across Western Australia, and one from Indonesia, will have their skills put to the test as they respond with the latest emergency vehicles and equipment to simulated emergency scenarios – complete with real flames, obstacles and ‘casualties’.
The teams will respond to seven realistic scenarios designed to test their response in first aid, hazardous materials, confined space rescue, vertical rescue, road crash rescue, team readiness and firefighting.
This year, MERC has partnered with WA’s Association of Volunteer Bush Fire Brigades who will simultaneously run the Bushfire Games on the adjacent event field.
MERC is a not-for-profit event, with all proceeds raised by competing teams and sponsors to be donated to the Fiona Wood Foundation and the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
Emergency Services Minister, Francis Logan, said he was pleased to see bushfire brigade volunteers in this year’s competition for the first time because it gives people a great opportunity to see how well the volunteers keep communities safe.
“Many of our bushfire volunteers have decades of experience and have been involved in significant emergency situations that have required the highest level of skill and bushfire management,” Mr Logan said.
“I wish all the competitors all the best and I hope they enjoy the day,” he concluded.
The event is free to the public, and families are encouraged to head down to witness some of the incredible skills performed on behalf of the tens of thousands of mining emergency response and bushfire volunteers.