New high-tech, lifesaving equipment is now in the hands of Melbourne firefighters.

  • Melbourne firefighters get new high-tech equipment
  • Equipment could save rescue workers valuable time
  • "We don't have to spend time putting the tools together."

The tools are comparable to standard hydraulic equipment called spreaders, which are used to cut accident victims out of vehicles or buildings.

The older models require tethers and generators and also take time to set up.

The new equipment, however, is battery powered and allows firefighters to squeeze into tighter spaces like down river banks or in the woods. It should allow rescue workers to free victims quicker.

"We don't have to spend time putting the tools together, kind of like at home in your garage, you get your cordless drill, cordless saw, boom — get right to work," said Operations Chief Shane Leech, of the Melbourne Fire Department.

Firefighters said the new tool saves about a minute of setup time — valuable when seconds count on a call.