CFA's regional training campuses provide our members with the opportunity to experience operational scenarios, including live fires, in a safe, controlled and realistic environment. This is essential in developing and maintaining the skills our members need to fulfil our mission of protecting the lives and property of Victorian communities.
The training campuses are purpose built, specialising in the simulation of scenarios that replicate field conditions within their region. CFA currently has seven regional training campuses, located at:
- West Sale
- Sunraysia (Mildura) - opened in August 2015
CFA also hosts training programs at the Victorian Emergency Management Training Centre (VEMTC) in Craigieburn. This facility is set on 10 hectares, and is used by all Victorian emergency services agencies to provide comprehensive opportunities for our career and volunteer emergency services workers.
CFA takes the safety of our people very seriously. Following the closure of our Fiskville Training College in March 2015, we have worked with the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) and other government and local authorities to assess the potential environmental impacts of historical training practices.
These practices included the use of fire-fighting foams containing perfluoroctane sulfonate (PFOS). Although CFA stopped using these foams at all training campuses in 2007, it is important that we understand the extent to which past firefighter training practices have potentially impacted our training campus sites, the environment, and the health and wellbeing of our members.
The EPA has issued CFA with Clean Up Notices for each of the regional training campuses, and CFA will continue to coordinate environmental testing at the campuses to meet the requirements under these Clean Up Notices.
Potential health risks posed to our members and the community from these practices have been independently assessed and are understood to be very low. On this basis, we are confident our regional training campuses remain safe for CFA members and visitors to engage in training activities.
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Further information on the regional training campus environmental assessments can also be found on the EPA website. The EPA has issued a perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) fact sheet (pdf 77k) to provide an overview of perfluorinated chemicals, including PFOS and established a hotline: 1300 372 842 to address any community concerns.
Clean Up Notices
On 4 September 2015, the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) issued a Clean Up Notice for CFA’s Penshurst training campus. Clean Up Notices for the other five training campuses were issued on 5 October 2015. These include: Bangholme, Huntly, Longerenong, Wangaratta and West Sale.
Our training campuses remain safe for CFA members and visitors. Clean Up Notices are issued regularly by the EPA, and the process has been designed to ensure CFA's training campuses meet environmental standards in the future. The notices are available for public viewing on the EPA website.
The current environmental concerns are a result of historical training practices that are no longer conducted at our campuses.
CFA is working closely with the EPA, local authorities and community members to ensure we meet the requirements outlined under each of the Clean Up Notices.
- Regional Training Centres - EPA notices revoked - July 2016 (pdf 42k)
- Second phase of Clean Up Notice requirements complete - April 2016 (pdf 26k)
- Regional Training Campus Update - Environmental Site Assessment Penshurst - 09 March 2016 (pdf 76k)
- First phase of Clean Up Notice requirements complete – 24 November 2015 (pdf 101k)
- Regional Training Campus Update – Parliamentary Inquiry into Fiskville extended – 21 September 2015
- Regional Training Campus Update – Clean Up Notice issued for Penshurst site – 11 September 2015
- EPA investigates potential contamination at Regional Training Campuses – 27 August 2015
- Clean-up work to be undertaken at regional training centres – 30 July 2015