Next generation of aviation fire fighters enter service

20 May 2013

Airservices welcomed 24 new aviation rescue fire fighters into service on Friday 17 May at a graduation ceremony held at the Airservices Learning Academy at Melbourne Airport.

The graduating recruits join more than 750 fire fighters at the nation’s busiest airports as part of Airservices Aviation Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) service.

Airservices Executive General Manager ARFF, Michelle Bennetts, said the new recruits will work at stations in Adelaide, Alice Springs, Cairns, Darwin, Hobart, Mackay, Perth, Rockhampton, Sydney and Townsville.

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

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

The recruits completed a physically and mentally demanding 11-week training course at Airservices Learning Academy in Melbourne. Theoretical and practical training undertaken included fighting simulated aircraft and structural fires, aviation rescue techniques and dealing with the hazards of highly flammable aviation fuels.

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

“These recruits are the first to train at our new state-of-the-art fire training ground and have demonstrated its functionality and their own skills and abilities,” Ms Spurr said.

“Over the last four years we have trained and developed more than 180 new fire fighters and are now realising the significant benefits we expected of the `true to life’ hot fire training facility in Melbourne, which we opened in mid April.”

The 24 graduating recruits come from a diverse range of backgrounds and include three women and two Indigenous Australians.