The South Australian State Emergency Service (SASES) is a volunteer based organisation. We are always looking for new volunteers to perform many different roles in the Adelaide metropolitan area and in regional areas across South Australia.
Becoming a volunteer can provide numerous benefits including: learning hands-on practical skills, free nationally-accredited training, valuable work experience, making new friends, and connecting with your community. Find your local unit and ideal position and register to become a volunteer today!
Frequent Questions About Volunteering
We are the control agency for storm and flood response under the SA Fire & Emergency Services Act 2005. We also provide a broad range of rescue services to the South Australian community.
The South Australian State Emergency Service (SES) has 73 Units across the state. For a full list of all SA SES units visit Our Units' page. The SES is the ONLY volunteer emergency service to operate across the entire metropolitan Adelaide area as well as across regional South Australia. Phone 1300 364 587 or fill in our Volunteer Registration Form and someone will contact you about volunteering opportunities available near you.. Volunteering for the SES is a great way to meet new people and get involved in the community.
There are many operational roles available in SES, and some are very specific to their location, such as Mines Rescue in Coober Pedy. Some of the roles include:
- Land Search and Rescue
- Storm/Flood Mitigation
- Swiftwater Rescue
- Marine Rescue
- Air supply operations (Drop Masters)
- Air Observers
- Road Crash Rescue
- Vertical Rescue
- Confined Space Rescue
- Dog Operations Unit
- Mounted Cadre (Horses)
- Mountain Bike Reconnaissance
- Structural collapse (USAR)
There are also a range of support roles that may be available in Units, such as:
- Administration Support
- Recruitment Coordinators
- Cadet Coordinators
- Special Events Coordinators
- Public and Media Liaison Coordinators
It is a team effort at the SES and we need lots of team players with a variety of skills. Not everyone has to hang off cliffs or cut people out of cars - we also need people to operate radios, observe, search, navigate, operate plant and machinery and lots more.
All roles are specific to local Unit needs and may not be available in all areas. Fill out our Volunteer Registration Form phone 1300 364 587 or email us for a referral to your local Unit who can provide you with more information about local requirements.
No, we provide all Personal Protective Equipment such as overalls, boots, gloves and helmets you will need.
The SES provides all of the training and PPE you will need to do the job.
Volunteers are covered for Civil Liability and Personal Injury as per the Agency Agreement between SAicorp and the SES with no limit on age.
In general, s 4 of the Volunteers Protection Act 2001 (SA) exempts volunteers from personal civil liability for an act or omission in the course of volunteering. This means that instead of the liability lying against the individual (volunteer), it would be against the Agency, in this case the SES."
In respect to Personal Accident cover, SES volunteers are prescribed 'workers' under the Work Health and Safety Act 2012 (SA) and the Return to Work Act 2014. Therefore, volunteers are supported in recovery and return to work in relation to injuries incurred in the course of SES activities.
Training is usually held once a week, for 3 hours in the evening. Some Units train once a fortnight or monthly, depending on local needs.
Usually 3 hours per week for training plus occasional training weekends and operational callouts if you are joining the rescue crew. The amount of callouts depends on how busy your Unit is. If you are undertaking a role other than rescue, your time commitments will be different. Volunteers respond to operational callouts as they occur (day and night). It is hard to predict how often this will be, but the SES is generally at its busiest during periods of extreme weather, in particular during floods and storms.