Di heads west to help Covid response

Di Droscher stands with an RFS vehicle as she prepared to leave for Dubbo on Monday.

Di Drosher is heading west, ready to spend two weeks as part of a Rural Fire Service team assisting the Covid-19 response around Dubbo.

Case numbers have continued to rise in the far west of New South Wales. Sunday’s reporting found two cases in Wilcannia, while Dubbo had 18, Narromine had three, Bourke had 2, Brewarrina had 1 and the Bogan Shire had 1.

The cluster has been concerning state health officials as they struggle to keep the Delta variant contained.

Mrs Droscher said she’s been part of RFS strike teams in the past during natural disasters, but hasn’t been involved in the state’s Covid response until now. She’ll be part of a 20-person team, which begins training today (Tuesday) and will be on hand for two weeks.

“The RFS sent out expressions of interest for people to apply and I thought I’d give it a go,” she explained simply.

Mrs Droscher is part of the Tumut and Batlow RFS brigades and said she wasn’t aware of anyone else on the team coming from the Snowy Valleys.

“[Tuesday] will be a training day and we’ll be talking to Western Health,” she said.

“After Tuesday, we’ll know where we’re going and what we’re doing.”

Based on past experiences, Mrs Droscher said the crew could be helping with tasks such as delivering food parcels and hampers or assisting with drive-through Covid testing sites.

“I know the RFS had also been helping out here in Wagga at their drive-through Covid centres,” she explained.

Mrs Droscher has been fully vaccinated with the AstraZeneca jab and said it was one of the requirements for joining the team. She had ‘no problems at all’ with the jab and said that she’s cautious about going into an area with active Covid-19 cases, but confident in the procedures in place.

“It is a little bit scary, but if you do the right thing, [you should be okay],” she said.

“Once we get our briefing from Western Health, the people there will most probably tell us what to do and what not to do. Just take precautions. Look after ourselves.”

Messages of support for the Batlow locals were flooding in on Monday morning, with the community expressing pride in Mrs Droscher’s willingness to help western neighbours.