Ravenhall maximum-security prison has a new $4.6 million operations base, two years after a riot that caused up to $12 million of damage and dozens of staff injuries.

The facility will house the security and emergency services group in a purpose-built complex that includes an armoury, training rooms and kennels for the dog squad.

In 2015, about 400 inmates at the Metropolitan Remand Centre rioted over a smoking ban. Dozens of staff were injured in the 15-hour rampage, 11 of whom have not returned to work.

In December, WorkSafe Victoria charged the Department of Justice and Regulation with four breaches of workplace health and safety laws, including failing to provide and maintain a safe workplace, failing to ensure the workplace was safe and failing to ensure persons other than employees were not exposed to risks.

Last month, at the opening of the new operations base at the Metropolitan Remand Centre, Corrections Victoria Commissioner Jan Shuard said significant measures had been taken to avoid a recurrence of the riot.

“Our security and emergency services group has grown significantly in the last few years,” he said. “We are now up to around 150 operational staff to provide services across the 14 prisons and youth justice facility.”


The Age