Fifty-one brave young Victorians have been honoured for their heroic and life-saving actions in the face of an emergency at the 13th annual Junior Triple Zero Hero Awards.
Minister for Emergency Services James Merlino attended the Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority (ESTA) awards to congratulate the children, aged between five and 16, for keeping calm under pressure and calling Victoria’s triple zero service to seek assistance.
Among the award winners was little hero, India. Aged just five, India called triple zero when her one-year-old brother started to choke after swallowing a five cent coin.
When nine-year-old Gabrielle discovered her house was on fire, she did the right thing. She got herself and her sister out immediately and called triple zero to report the fire.
Another junior hero, seven-year-old Jamie, used quick thinking to call triple zero after his mother had a seizure and lost consciousness. Jamie cared for both his mother and his younger sister until paramedics arrived.
Mr Merlino said these stories of bravery are a perfect reminder to all Victorians about the importance of teaching children how to identify, confidently react to and report legitimate emergencies by calling triple zero.
The Junior Triple Zero Heroes were nominated by ESTA’s Triple Zero operators.
ESTA, Victoria’s emergency communications agency, receives emergency calls for the CFA, MFB, Victoria Police, Ambulance Victoria and Victoria State Emergency Service. Operators work 24 hours a day, every day of the year. In 2015–16, ESTA answered about 2.5 million calls for assistance across Victoria, this is an average of almost 7,000 calls each day or a call every 12 seconds.
The ESTA website has a fun and informative Kids Zone, where children can learn about what to do in an emergency and how and when to call 000.