Testing and enhancing crisis management

Department of Defence

It was an all-agencies approach at Fleet Base West, Rockingham, as Exercise Vulcan Phoenix got underway.

On May 22, Navy teamed up with St John WA, the Department of Fire and Emergency Services, WA Police and Fremantle Ports for the exercise, which tested interagency responses to a critical incident on board a Navy ship.

Exercise Director Petty Officer Chris Murray said the safety of people and the community was front of mind.

“Safety remains Defence’s highest priority. Exercises like this ensure Defence members are aware of their roles and responsibilities during an emergency and are able to work with state emergency services during the response and recover phases,” Petty Officer Murray said.

“This exercise is being conducted in a way that is realistic for participants but minimises disruption to local residents and businesses.”

St John WA Area Manager Aaron Dean highlighted the usefulness of the exercise.

“Training is always beneficial, and getting an understanding of how the Fleet Base West medical team works is valuable for interagency cooperation and enables us to utilise each other’s resources effectively,” he said.

Defence’s long-standing relationship with WA emergency services was strengthened in recent years during responses to bushfires, floods and the COVID-19 pandemic.

District Officer Ryan Murray, of the Department of Fire and Emergency Services, said the exercise helped develop team cohesion.

“With so many agencies working together, coordination and communication can be challenging. In the unlikely event of a real scenario, the training we conduct here enables us to resolve situations as quickly as possible,” he said.

Exercise Vulcan Phoenix is a regular training activity, with each iteration further developing interagency cooperation.

/Public Release. View in full here.