Tuesday marks 60 years of the Wagga State Emergency Service during times of floods, storms and other events that have faced the community.
The Wagga unit is mainly comprised of volunteers ranging in ages, with the youngest welcomed on board at the age of 16.
Deputy unit commander Madison Clear, 22, has recently returned from maternity leave and works full-time at McDonald’s.
“I joined the team five years ago after a volunteer at the unit spoke to my classroom at school and the skills and confidence they gained,” Mrs Clear said.
Mrs Clear said the unit plays a huge role in the community as well as other emergency services at a time of need.
“We play an essential role in the community and we're everyday locals who know the community and local area,” she said.
“We understand the risks associated with floods and we're able to act upon that local knowledge in emergency situations.”
Head of the local volunteer unit Daniel Mahoney said the unit also assists with police searches and community events.
“Our team doesn't just do floods and storms, we also assist the police in searches both above ground and in the river, and we go to community events, like Relay for Life,” he said.
“We give extra hands to people putting up tents and we also help out the Wagga City Councill, as well as fantastic annual events like the Gumi Race.
“Our guys do everything from first-aid to assistance during major storms and floods, and it's been such a privilege to work with the team of volunteers.”
Mr Mahoney said one of the biggest emergencies that the unit has faced over the 60 years was the 1974 floods.
Jason McDonnell joined the crew in 2006 and has been one of the longest serving volunteers in the Wagga SES. Mr McDonnell remembered the 2016 floods in Wagga as "rather intense”.
“I joined about 12 years ago as the old controller was a friend of mine and convinced me to come and give it a go," he said.
“This flood was rather intense for us as we were on the front line and on the boats and I was leading and directing a team on what to do and how to do things.
“But, we have a lot of support here and there's always senior members who will support the newer members.”
Mr McDonnell said it is “satisfying" when a person seeks help during an emergency and the SES are able to offer assistance.
“When a person needs help, whether it's water in the house or removing a tree, when somebody has no clue and they reach out, it feels good to be able to assist them in a prompt time,” he said.
The Wagga SES invites the community to attend an open day on December 1, to celebrate the milestone and a chance for the people to see how the community is assisted in times of natural and man-made disasters.
Mr McDonnell said this gives the community a chance to come down and see what the SES team does, as well as ask questions and notify the team if there is a “problem tree”.