As the driver of an emergency vehicle, you must always have regard for your own safety, that of your passengers, of other road users and of the public. You must always drive your vehicle carefully and in a safe and controlled manner.
You must also operate the vehicle in accordance with Federal, State and Territory legislation as well as abiding by any additional agency doctrine governing the driving of such vehicles. It is important that the vehicle being used is one that is capable of meeting the operational requirements associated with the task being undertaken, and that it is suitable for use in the terrain where the tasking is situated
Driving a large vehicle requires considerably more skill than driving a typical family car. You must know and understand the automotive systems associated with the vehicles you drive, and the pre-use and pre-drive checks that need to be undertaken before driving them.
This learner resource provides you with an overview of the skills and knowledge required to drive such a vehicle in emergency and non-emergency response conditions on and off-road. The content focuses on defensive driving techniques, and how to apply these skills in a variety of traffic, road and terrain conditions. The content also addresses basic recovery equipment and how to use it.

Learning objectives

On completion of this unit, you should have knowledge of and be able to demonstrate:

  • an understanding of automotive systems and any maintenance associated with them
  • vehicle checks that must be conducted before driving a vehicle, including
    • cabin raising and lowering
    • pre-use check
    • cabin and pre-drive preparation
    • test run
    • parking and securing a vehicle
  • an understanding of the legislative and agency requirements relating to driving a vehicle under non-operational and under operational conditions
  • driving skills under both operational and non-operational conditions, including
    • defensive driving techniques and operation of a vehicle in accordance with agency doctrine
    • the procedures for stopping, siting and securing a vehicle
  • a knowledge of the traffic, road and terrain conditions that need to be considered when driving a vehicle
  • the ability to drive a vehicle off-road and undertake the following activities — explain the characteristics of four-wheel drive
    • demonstrate vehicle manoeuvring skills
    • demonstrate engagement of a four-wheel drive and describe the conditions in which to activate it
    • demonstrate stall recovery skills
    •  demonstrate vehicle control in a variety of off-road conditions
  • procedures for recovering a vehicle, including
    • the equipment used
    • the principles of recovery
    • the use of jacking equipment supplied with the vehicle.