Release

Elite aviation fire fighters ready for service

8 Aug 2014

Twenty three new aviation rescue fire fighters will commence work at airports around the country next week following their graduation from Airservices Learning Academy in Melbourne today.

The elite group of recruits, which includes three female fire fighters, have just completed 11 weeks of intensive training, allowing them to join more than 800 highly-trained and professional aviation rescue fire fighters around the country.

The new recruits have been trained in fighting aircraft and structural fires, aviation rescue techniques and dealing with the hazards of highly flammable aviation fuels.

A key component of the training sees the recruits extinguish simulated aircraft fires at Airservices state-of-the-art fire training ground.

Airservices General Manager Learning Academy, Linda Spurr congratulated the graduates on successfully completing the demanding training course.

“Over the last 11 weeks our graduates have completed more than 400 hours of theoretical and practical learning,” Ms Spurr said.

“Today’s graduation marks a significant milestone in their careers – enabling the safe travel of millions of passengers each year.”

Aviation fire fighter Matthew Garnsworthywas presented with the Silver Axe Award for the most outstanding recruit of the course, and will now join the Aviation Rescue Fire Fighting (ARFF) service at Melbourne.

Airservices Executive General Manager ARFF, Michelle Bennetts said the new recruits will work at stations in Adelaide, Alice Springs, Cairns, Canberra, Gladstone, Gold Coast, Hobart, Launceston, Melbourne and Sydney.

“Airservices has one of the largest, most highly trained, professional aviation rescue fire fighting services in the world,” Ms Bennetts said.

“Our aviation fire fighters have the expertise to provide Australian airports and airline passengers with first-rate rescue and fire fighting services.”

Airservices was recently short-listed as one of three finalists for ‘Employer of the Year’ in this year’s Victorian Training Awards for its specialised training facilities and extent of training undertaken by Airservices staff.