A new flood rescue unit has been opened by Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service to provide additional support to individuals across the area in times of flooding.
The Gloucestershire Echo reports the award-winning Gloucestershire Water Rescue Centre is adding a new water relief unit to its fleet of vehicles, ensuring the team is able to respond as swiftly as possible in times of emergency.
It will replace a smaller towing vehicle for the team’s rescue boats and is able to tackle even the toughest terrain in wet and treacherous conditions.
Deputy chief fire officer Geoff Sallis said: “The 2007 floods were a great learning experience for the service and we’ve used these lessons to ensure we are even better prepared to handle water rescues should we be called upon.”
The investment forms part of the service’s Integrated Risk Management Plan that was drawn up following the 2007 floods, with the vehicle also more capable of transporting essential equipment for rescues when individuals are caught in rising waters.
Tom Keeling, Tewkesbury station commander for the Severn Area Rescue Association, added his support for the new unit, stating the provision of purpose-built vehicle for improving rescue services will go a long way to helping in future flood situations.
It also demonstrates the local authority’s continuing commitment to improving relief services for all across the county, as the new vehicle will also be available for use by other fire departments in the area.
Councillor Will Windsor-Clive, cabinet member for fire, planning and infrastructure, told the news provider the addition of this new rescue vehicle to the centre’s fleet will further support the community during times of flooding.
It will complement the excellent levels of expertise already within the flood rescue team and ensure both responsiveness and efficiency in emergency situations is boosted.
Homeowners who wish to ensure their financial protection in case of flooding should consider taking out insurance for flood risk areas from GSI Insurance Services (Southern) Limited.