News from the CRC


Photo: Australasian Road Rescue Organisation
Photo: Australasian Road Rescue Organisation
Release date
26 Aug 2016

New emergency response technologies set to reduce fatalities across Australia

The world’s latest fire fighting and emergency rescue technologies including car crash rescue equipment, helicopter drones, and a water turbine mounted on a robot bulldozer will all be on show next week at AFAC16 powered by INTERSCHUTZ at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, 30 August - 1 September 2016.

With over 1,200 road fatalities on Australian roads each year and over 400 in New Zealand, the expertise of road crash emergency responders to mitigate risk and care for individuals within the vehicle is essential. The Australasian Road Rescue Organisation (ARRO) will demonstrate two severe road crash rescue simulations including the removal of the side of a vehicle and the roof utilising world-class tools like the ‘jaws of life’ and a range of hydraulic spreaders, cutters and manual air tools.

Mark Roche, President, Australasian Road Rescue Organisation, recognises how emergency rescue techniques have changed in the past decade in response to developments in motor vehicle design and how critical events like AFAC16 are in bringing the emergency response community together to share knowledge.

“Vehicle design has seen huge developments in recent years, including the strength of the steel, force absorption and advances in safety technology including air bags and seat belts, that all have an impact on road rescues. This is why we continue to work very closely with car manufacturers to understand the impacts these developments have on road safety and necessary techniques required for road rescues.

“It is vital emergency road rescuers across Australia have the necessary education, training and tools to perform road crash extractions safely and quickly. AFAC16 powered by INTERSCHUTZ provides the opportunity for ARRO to share the latest vehicle rescue research and techniques with Australia’s emergency sector,” said Mr Roche. 

In addition, emergency managers will witness live demonstrations of new firefighting technologies, including virtual fire training using smoke and special screens by BullEx & HAAGEN, and a fire retardant solution that drops solar panels voltage to zero, removing the risk of explosion, by PV Stop.

Australians can expect to see the innovations, presented on the showfloor of AFAC16 powered by INTERSCHUTZ, being used across Australia in the coming months:  

  • Westpac Little Ripper Shark Detection Drone: Revolutionising Australian coastal safety, this Vaper 55 helicopter drone from Skyline UAV is equipped with a front-mounted camera that utilises infra-red technology to detect sharks, sending information to controllers up to five nautical miles away.
  • A remote operated fire extinguishing turbine mounted on a crawler vehicle: The TAF20 can blast water the length of a football field, plus has the strength to move large objects such as cars, out of the way.
  • A high-performance off-road firetruck fitted with self-protection features: The Mercedes Benz UNI-MOG is ideal for Australian conditions with a fire protected cabin for crews and technology to reduce the risk of trucks overturning as a result of falling trees.
  • A firefighting turntable ladder:The Sasgcar Metz L20 - FA Aerial Ladder is arguably the quickest, lightest, strongest and most refined on the global fire and rescue market. Automatic terrain compensation allows the ladder to remain horizontal while the truck leans up to 8.5 degrees. The ladder can rotate 360 degrees and can hold a working load of 450kg.

AFAC16 powered by INTERSHUTZ invites all fire and emergency management personnel to attend the exhibition, which is open from Wednesday 31 August (9:00am-5:00pm) – Thursday 1 September 2016 (9:00am-3.30pm) at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre.

For more information visit:

More news from the CRC

Ed Pikusa and Holger Maier receive their outstanding achievement award from Dr Richard Thornton.
A cluster team and PhD student have been recognised with CRC awards at AFAC17 powered by INTERSCHUTZ, the CRC's annual conference held in collaboration with AFAC in Sydney recently.
Alex Wolkow assessed how sleep deprivation and stress impacted on firefighter performance.
The next round of funding is available for the CRC’s Tactical Research Fund, established to support short-duration research projects to meet the near term needs of Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC partners.
Celeste Young presenting at the 2017 Research Forum
For a second straight year, the attendance record was broken at AFAC17 powered by INTERSCHUTZ, with more than 3,200 emergency service managers, volunteers, researchers and industry representatives gathering in Sydney...
CRC sign
New journal articles and reports on CRC research are available online.
Ngarkat, Sth Australia, fire and smoke
New fire modelling software, teaching kids about bushfire and research on Cyclone Debbie are all covered in the latest edition of Fire Australia.
Future versions of Amicus will hopefully include a searchable database, allowing comparisons with historical fires, such as Black Saturday (pictured), in similar conditions. Photo: Country Fire Authority
New prediction software developed by CSIRO is helping to combine the complex science of fire behaviour prediction with the expert knowledge needed to fill in the gaps.
Photo: NSW Rural Fire Service
School curriculum changes have made the study of bushfire impacts compulsory for NSW primary students in Year 5 and 6, giving fire agencies a unique opportunity to improve community resilience
An aerial shot of the damage from the Margaret River fire in 2011
Prescribed burning can be a highly effective bushfire mitigation strategy, but despite good science, planning and practice, it is an inherently risky business.
Photo: NSW State Emergency Service
CRC research is investigating the impacts of Cyclone Debbie and helping to inform mitigation and resilience to severe wind
For the first time, emergency services and police across Australia will be surveyed about their mental health and wellbeing
A new direction of natural hazards research is set to begin, with nine new research projects from the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC.

News archives

All the resources from our 2016 conference

Research program in detail

Where, why and how are Australians dying in floods?

2015-2016 year in review

Bushfire planning with kids ebook

Explore by keyword