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Emergency management sector continues to grow, diversify and ride the waves of change at largest AFAC yet

AFAC19 wraps up by celebrating diversity, inclusion, multi-industry collaboration and huge sector advancement as it looks forward to another jam-packed event for AFAC20

Records were smashed at Australasia’s largest-ever emergency management conference, with AFAC19 powered by INTERSCHUTZ seeing more than 4,000 attendees over four days in Melbourne.
AFAC19 included speakers and exhibitors from over 17 countries including the US, Canada, Germany and Fiji, and an expo stage that shared over 30 practical presentations. This year the event hosted a record 194 exhibitors. This was also the second time AFAC19 was held alongside the Australian Disaster Resilience Conference and the first time alongside the Institution of Fire Engineers (IFE) Australia Conference.
Stuart Ellis, CEO, AFAC said AFAC19 had been a remarkable success.
“This year was our biggest conference to date, and we explored many of the big issues affecting the wider community including climate change and technological advancements. As well as reflecting on our current work, we also challenged the sector to look forward and consider how all agencies can evolve to better reflect the communities we serve.
“AFAC19 was a vital opportunity to open up conversations around the changing nature of emergency management to look at how we can do things differently.”
This year’s speaker presentations focused on a push towards greater diversity and inclusion, empowering communities to be better prepared for emergencies, and helping with community resilience in the wake of emergencies and disasters.
Keynote speaker, Dr Robert Glasser, opened the second day of the conference with his presentation on preparing for an emerging era of disasters. Dr Glasser used his experiences as former head of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction and his role as Special Representative to the UN Secretary General for Disaster Risk Reduction to detail the realities of the impact climate change will continue to have on disaster and emergency management and how emergency responders can prepare for this.
“As our planet continues to warm, we will be entering an unprecedented time, an era of disasters unlike anything we’ve experienced before.
“It’s human nature to assume the future will unfold in the same way as the recent past. However that is a dangerously flawed way of managing disaster risk,” said Dr Glasser.
The Australian Seasonal Bushfire Outlook was released at AFAC19 by the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC. The 2019/20 fire season has the potential to be a very active season across Australia, as has already been seen in Queensland and New South Wales, following a very warm and dry start to the year.
Other highlights of AFAC19 included:
  • A high calibre and diverse range of speakers, subject matter experts and attendees, numbering 4,061 over the four days of the conference
  • The largest number of exhibitors and the most spectacular exhibition floor in the history of the event
  • Unprecedented cross-industry collaboration leading to one of the most successful exhibitions and conferences in AFAC history
  • Strong support and open embracing of the themes of diversity and inclusion by all participants and attendees.
Code 3 who have exhibited at AFAC for a number of years were thrilled with the turnout at the exhibition and the success of this year’s event. Jon Julian, National Sales Manager – Emergency said “AFAC19 was an incredible opportunity for Code 3 to showcase our C3DNA technology and generate a huge amount of interest and exposure for our emergency lighting and warning device products. The whole exhibition hall was spectacular, we are extremely happy with the success of AFAC19 and cannot wait to see what is in store for AFAC20.”  
As AFAC looks forward to 2020, the focus of the event will shift to Connecting communities. Creating resilience. The 2020 AFAC conference will be held in Adelaide from 25-28 August at the Adelaide Convention Centre and is set to build on the incredible momentum of the 2019 conference and exhibition.
Further information is available at www.afacconference.com.au
 Media contacts:

Elizabeth Williams, Group Account Director | elizabeth@zadroagency.com.au
+61 2 9212 7867 | +61 411 201 354
Yvette Schlegelmilch, Account Manager | yvette@zadroagency.com.au
+61 2 9212 7867 | +61 423 954 224
Images: All images can be found on the AFAC Flickr page and can be used royalty-free with attribution to AFAC19. 
Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council (AFAC)
Website: www.afacconference.com.au/
Facebook: @AFACnews
Twitter: @AFACnews
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/australasian-fire-and-emergency-service-authorities-council
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCu18lYmKgFcL27XBKFI7Klw
Hashtag: #AFAC19
Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC
Facebook: @bnhcrc
Twitter: @bnhcrc
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bushfire-and-natural-hazards-crc-a0919043/
YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/bnhcrc
Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience
Website: www.aidr.org.au/adrc
Facebook: @AIDRnews
Twitter: @AIDR_news
Linked In: https://au.linkedin.com/company/aidr
Hashtag: #ADRC2019
Institution of Fire Engineers
Website: https://www.afacconference.com.au/ife/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/InstitutionOfFireEngineersAustraliaBranch/
Linked In: https://www.linkedin.com/company/institution-of-fire-engineers/