Australia’s leading emergency management conference and expo, AFAC17 powered by INTERSCHUTZ, attracted a record attendance of more than 3,200 visitors to Sydney to discuss the latest in research, learning and practices in collaborative management and natural hazard responses, last week at the International Convention Centre Sydney.
AFAC’s successful partnership with Deutsche Messe, organisers of the world renowned emergency management trade fair INTERSCHUTZ, brought the exhibition to Sydney for the first time in six years.
Record visitor numbers saw total attendee numbers increase by over 30 per cent compared to AFAC16 which broke attendance records in Brisbane last year, while total visitor numbers were up 75 per cent.
Stuart Ellis AM, CEO, Australasian Fire and Emergency Services Authority Council (AFAC) remarked on the overall success of the conference and exhibition.
“The theme of the conference was collaborating for success and it was really great to see so much collaboration occurring throughout the four days. The calibre of speakers across the program, alongside the live demonstrations of technology and new rescue techniques demonstrate the strength of Australia’s emergency management and natural hazard response sector,” said Mr Ellis.
Taking up an expansive 14,000 sqm, the exhibition showcased 189 organisations including Isuzu, Iveco, Tatra, Mercedes-Benz, Scania, Fraser Fire & Rescue, Fuso, Volvo and HINO.
Showfloor highlights included the interactive Expo Stage, along with 10 live outdoor demonstrations showcasing the latest technology and rescue techniques. Attracting more than 100 local and international experts in a range of emergency management fields – speakers included Dr Blair Trewin, Climate Scientist, Bureau of Meteorology; Ann Bostrom, Professor in Environmental Policy, University of Washington and Bart van Leeuwen, smart data expert and senior Dutch firefighter – all presenting their latest research and knowledge across the conference.
Dr Richard Thornton, CEO, Bushfire and Natural Hazards Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) commented on the value of research in emergency management.
“Australia is a leader in emergency management research, and we are proud to see research from the Bushfire and Natural Hazard CRC being shared with the industry at the Research Forum. Our partners are embracing the results of the science and working hard to implement the work into their practices. AFAC17 powered by INTERSCHUTZ provides a fantastic chance for the broader sector to see how our science is being used, as well as what is to come over the next four years,” said Dr Thornton.
In addition, Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC launched the much anticipated Southern Australia Bushfire Outlook 2017 in a press conference held on Tuesday, 5 September 2017.
At the close of the exhibition, over 70% of exhibition space for the 2018 exhibition had been sold. AFAC18 powered by INTERSCHUTZ will be held in Western Australia from 5-8 September 2018 at the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre.