Cameras help train volunteer rescuers

MARINE Rescue Shoalhaven has become the first in the state to be presented with a GoPro camera as part of a $30,000 rollout.

Minister for Police and Emergency Services Michael Gallacher is handing out 70 cameras to the rescue organisation.

The Shoalhaven presentation took place on Wednesday aboard the the AM McGilvray 2 at the Crookhaven boat ramp.

Joined by Marine Rescue NSW Commissioner Stacey Tannos and South Coast MP Shelley Hancock, Mr Gallacher said the new technology would become a valuable tool for the rescue organisations.

The cameras will be installed on the front-line rescue fleet and used to provide members with realistic training scenarios and debriefings as well as providing footage of operations.

“With technology that is available today, we have to make sure that organisations like Marine Rescue have an ability to record the important work they do,” Mr Gallacher said.

“The footage can not only be used for investigative purposes should they have to respond to an emergency and there is a tragedy, but also as a training aid.

“And it is important they have the opportunity to review things.

“You can’t make mistakes when you are out to sea.

“No rescue operation and no day at sea is ever the same and these volunteers are frequently called on to place their own safety at risk rescuing or assisting boaters in trouble in terrible conditions.

“Organisations like this, although made up of volunteers, are overwhelmingly very professional and focused on training.”

Mr Gallacher said the GoPros would also raise the awareness of the organisation within the community.

“The cameras will allow people to see the important role these personnel play and hopefully that will also attract more people to the organisation,” he said.

Marine Rescue Shoalhaven unit commander Terry Watson accepted two cameras, saying they would be invaluable.

“It is a great honour for Marine Rescue Shoalhaven to receive the first cameras and they will certainly be put to good use,” he said.

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