1971 - Inaugural Charter of the Shepparton Search & Rescue Squad.

SSRS was first discussed in 1971 to fill the void of an organised rescue group in the area. SSRS founding members put the idea forward and it was enthusiastically embraces by other emergency services.

1972 - Shepparton Search and Rescue Squad Inc first registered.

1973 - Small Motorised Train was purchased from the Uncle Bob's Club for Fund Raising.

1974 - Floods

SSRS members were on the ground during the Shepparton floods of 1974, which peaked at 12.09m. Their assistance to emergency services was highly sought after.

1975 - First SS&RS Rescue Vehicle built.

Primarily used for Diving and Recovery Operations, the first rescue vehicle was a monumental step in SSRS's History

1976 - Purchase of Rescue Boat and outboard motor with trailer.

1977 - Second Rescue Vehicle built. 

This Vehicle was designed to perform Road Accident Rescues, General Rescue operations and Dive and Recover work.

1978 - Purchase of HURST "Jaws of Life". 

SSRS secured the first Jaws of Life in regional Australia at a cost of more than $8500. The rescue tool is used to extricate people out of damaged vehicles after severe collisions.

1978 - Purchase and Implementation of a Radio Paging System.

A Decade of Dedication: 

The Foundational Years of the Shepparton Search & Rescue Squad

In the early 1970s, the town of Shepparton, nestled in the heart of Victoria, Australia, recognized a critical gap in its community services. There was a noticeable absence of an organized group specifically dedicated to conducting search and rescue operations—a void that became the catalyst for the formation of the Shepparton Search & Rescue Squad (SSRS). 

1971: The Birth of a Vision

The conversation around establishing a specialized rescue squad began in earnest in 1971. The founding members of SSRS, realizing the pressing need for such a service, proposed the idea to the community and other emergency services. The concept was met with immediate and enthusiastic support, setting the stage for a formalized operation. 

1972: Official Formation

A year later, the Shepparton Search and Rescue Squad Inc. was officially registered, marking a pivotal moment in its history. This formal recognition was the first step towards operational readiness and community engagement. 

1973: Funding Innovations

By 1973, the newly formed squad started to implement innovative fundraising strategies. One such initiative was the acquisition of a small motorized train from Uncle Bob's Club, a charity organization. This purchase showcased SSRS's early commitment to raising funds creatively to support their vital operations. 

1974: Tested by Nature

The squad's capabilities were put to a significant test in 1974 when Shepparton experienced severe flooding, with water levels peaking at 12.09 meters. The SSRS members were integral to the emergency response, working tirelessly on the ground to assist affected residents and coordinate with other emergency services. 

1975: Expanding Capabilities

The following year, SSRS built its first rescue vehicle, primarily used for diving and recovery operations. This vehicle was a critical addition to their resources, enabling more specialized responses to emergencies involving water. 

1976: Enhancing Rescue Operations

The squad continued to expand its fleet in 1976 with the purchase of a rescue boat and an accompanying outboard motor and trailer. This investment significantly enhanced the SSRS's ability to conduct water-based rescue operations more effectively. 

1977: Second Rescue Vehicle

Building on their momentum, SSRS constructed a second rescue vehicle in 1977. This new asset was equipped to handle a broader range of emergency situations, including road accident rescues, general rescue operations, and continued support for dive and recovery missions

1978: Life-Saving Innovations

1978 was a landmark year for the SSRS with two major acquisitions. Firstly, they secured a HURST "Jaws of Life"—the first of its kind in regional Australia. Costing over $8,500, this tool significantly enhanced the squad’s capability to extricate victims from severely damaged vehicles. Secondly, the squad implemented a radio paging system, streamlining communication and improving response times during emergencies.