Queensland Fire and Emergency Service
Firefighters like Kyle Keighery are required to carry a pager 24/7 and respond when a community emergency occurs.
“Mixing a physically and mentally demanding job with a lack of shut-eye can be a challenge,” Kyle admits.
“But negotiating the large trucks through heavy traffic can be tricky so the quiet roads are a welcome change.”
A typical night kicks off with a shift change-over and safety briefing, followed by an update of the workload for that night. From there it’s on to appliance and equipment checks to ensure operational readiness is achieved. Next it’s time for training modules, either practical or theory-based, to refresh and test the crew’s skills and knowledge. Any of this can be interrupted at any time when the bells sound to signal an emergency.
Mixing a physically and mentally demanding job with a lack of shut-eye can be a challenge.
“The first night shift I had in Townsville was my Station Officer’s last shift before retirement after over 35 years of service,” Kyle recalls.
“He was hoping for a relaxing last shift but we were called out to a factory fire. Dangerous super-heated smoke was pouring out of the rafters and the puppy nursery next store was under direct threat.
“We made entry and started an aggressive internal attack. The smoke was thick and the heat was intense but, after hours of teamwork, we managed to save half the workshop. And, although they were a little shaken, not a single puppy was harmed. What a send-off!”