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Army deployed to Lemnos to help Australia’s only mask factory

By Spencer Fowler Steen

Australian Defence Force soldiers have been deployed to help Australia's only mask manufacturer, Med-Con, near Shepparton.

The Federal Government confirmed on Tuesday about a dozen ADF personnel would be called out under the Defence Assistance to the Civil Community rules to help Med-Con ramp up production of personal protective equipment.

Three army trucks were seen heading north on Doyles Rd about 7.20 am Wednesday morning.

It comes as the Federal Government tries to source locally-made masks, sanitiser, goggles and gowns with coronavirus draining global supply lines.

A joint statement from Defence Minister Linda Reynolds and Industry Minister Karen Andrews on Tuesday said a team of engineering maintenance specialists from the Army Logistic Training Centre and the Joint Logistics Until would plug a short-term gap in labour.

“These skilled soldiers are with the company's existing staff on production, maintenance and warehousing tasks,” Senator Reynolds said.

“This is an example of the kind of exceptional circumstances which the DACC rules are designed to cover.”

Meanwhile the government has put out a request for information in order to work out domestic production capabilities.

More to come.