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SCDF Reshapes Capabilities Through Innovation
With a heightened terrorist threat looming against a rising demand for emergency ambulance services.

Honoring the importance of civil defence in Singapore, the Annual Singapore Civil Defence Parade was held in conjunction with the Singapore-Global Firefighters and Paramedics Challenge (SGFPC) 2016 at the Singapore Expo.

The SGFPC is a civil defence skills competition that was first launched in 2012 by the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) to raise its profile at the international level.

The parade featured a Guard-of-Honour contingent formed by officers from the 3rd SCDF Division, who received the Best Civil Defence Division Award in 2016. They were joined by marching contingents from the SCDF Divisions, Civil Defence Academy, National Service Training Institution, Operationally Ready National Service Units and National Civil Defence Cadet Corps.

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The SCDF Parade provides the platform to recognize its partners and the community for their resolute support and cooperation. PHOTO: Mabel Yap
 

“2016 has been a very busy year for civil defence, many of you would remember the high-profile fire cases. For instance, the CK building fire which took our firefighters 16 hours to extinguish, and the recent fire at Sungei Kadut where seven people were rescued by our officers from a burning building,” said Guest-of-Honor Mr Desmond Lee, Senior Minister of State for Home Affairs and National Development.

In the first nine months of 2016, the SCDF had attended to nearly 135,000 emergency medical calls, higher that in the same period last year.

“In Singapore, the SCDF’s challenges are rising demand for emergency ambulance services, and a heightened terrorism threat,” Mr Lee added.

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 During his speech, Senior Minister of State for Home Affairs Mr Desmond Lee thanked the firefighters and paramedics who worked tirelessly with the noble and important mission of saving lives and building safe communities. PHOTO: Mabel Yap
 

To enhance its marine fire-fighting and rescue capabilities, the SCDF unveiled the new Rapid Response Fire Vessel (RFV), a purpose-built vessel designed by the SCDF Marine Command.

“It can reach speeds of more than 40 knots, and is highly maneuverable. The vessel allows SCDF to respond more quickly to incidents,” Mr Lee highlighted.

The two RFVs, which will be based in each of the two Marine Fire Stations, are expected to be operational by May 2017.

Aside from developing new operational capabilities on land and at sea, the SCDF is also looking to harness the power of information, particularly in the area of information integration in Emergency Medical Services.

Over the next few years, the SCDF is developing the Operational Medical Networks Informatics Intergrator, or Project OMNII. The project involves a smart ambulance with a suite of smart devices and wearables that will provide responders with vital data about the patient before they arrive at the scene.

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The 6th generation ambulance, which are equipped with technologically advanced features such as the collision warning systems and Rumbler Sirens, was showcased during the Lifesavers' Connect Exhibition. PHOTO: Mabel Yap
 

“And after picking up the patient, en-route to the hospital, OMNII will allow the paramedic crew to send information regarding the patient’s condition even before the ambulance reaches the hospital, so that the emergency medical crew can be prepared to receive the patient,” Mr Lee said.

Mr Lee also commended SCDF’s Save-A-Life initiative, which had seen several success stories since its launch in August 2015.

“In the past, our key focus was to get the ambulance and the paramedics to the victims as fast as we can. But apart from how fast the ambulance can reach the victim, we should be asking also how fast help can reach the victim. In this case, the fastest help may be a Community First Responder, and the innovation in Save-A-Life is enabling this community first responder,” Mr Lee added during his speech at the SCDF Parade.

This was the fourth year in which the parade to be held alongside the SGFPC. This year, more than 500 participants comprising overseas fire and emergency agencies from 15 countries, SCDF officers and members of the community took part in the test of operational skills, fitness and teamwork.

© 2019 Ministry of Home Affairs, Singapore. All Rights Reserved.


  1. by Desmond Ang
  2. 14 November 2016
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