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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Fire and Emergency Services
    The Honourable Craig Crawford

    Sixteen new firefighters to hit the road in Gladstone, Rockhampton and Mackay

    Minister for Fire and Emergency Services
    The Honourable Craig Crawford

    Friday, July 20, 2018

    Sixteen new firefighters to hit the road in Gladstone, Rockhampton and Mackay

    Regional centres will benefit from the Palaszczuk Government’s $29 million commitment to deliver 100 new firefighting jobs in Queensland, Fire and Emergency Services Minister Craig Crawford said today (Friday, July 20).

    Announcing where the first round of 62 new firefighters will be based under the “unprecedented” four-year commitment, Mr Crawford said the Central Queensland region would receive 16 recruits.

    “The Palaszczuk Government is committed to ensuring Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) has the personnel, infrastructure and equipment to deliver enhanced services and support,” Mr Crawford said.

    “We reaffirmed this commitment to Queensland communities in this year’s record $702 million QFES Budget, and now we are delivering on our election promise to boost frontline services in these areas.

    “Regional centres across Queensland are continuing to grow, so it is only fitting more frontline firefighting staff are sent to these areas to meet future demand.

    “Ten new firefighters will be deployed in Gladstone; three in Rockhampton and three in Mackay,” he said.

    Mr Crawford said the allocation of the firefighting positions had been determined by QFES, based on operational response priorities.

    “These additional firefighters will go a long way towards boosting frontline services and we will continue working with the QFES Commissioner Katarina Carroll and stakeholders regarding the deployment of the remaining 38 recruits – to ensure QFES has the resources it needs to keep Queenslanders safe,” he said.

    Mr Crawford said the Palaszczuk Government was delivering on yet another election promise, by also funding an additional 12 fire communications officers at yet-to-be-confirmed locations.

    “Once again, the QFES Commissioner will determine where these officers will be best placed to serve Queensland communities,” he said.

    Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher welcomed the additional 10 firefighters.

    "We know industry in Gladstone operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and the new firefighters are certainly welcome additions,” Mr Butcher said.

    “This Government recognises communities – like Gladstone – are growing and thriving, and it is imperative we continue to look forward to meet their needs,” he said.

    Member for Rockhampton Barry O’Rourke said the three new firefighters were on top of the $2.1 million allocated in the 2018-19 QFES Budget for Gracemere’ replacement Fire and Rescue Station.

    “The Palaszczuk Government is recognising Central Queensland’s increasing demand for services,” Mr O’Rourke said.

    “The number of incidents firefighters attend is steadily rising, so it’s imperative we plan for population growth in rural Queensland.”

    Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga said the new firefighters would be a “great asset” to the region.

    “The Palaszczuk Government is committed to ensuring QFES has the personnel and equipment to continue responding to emergencies confidently and safely,” she said.

    “Central Queensland is growing, and it is important QFES grows with it.”

    Member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert, who welcomed the three new recruits, said it was vital QFES had the capacity to continue their “first-class work of being first-responders”.

    “Additional firefighters, and new equipment such as appliances and stations, mean the community can feel at ease knowing our fire and emergency services are ready to respond at a moment’s notice,” she said.

    “And Mackay’s new $7.2 million state-of-the-art Fire and Rescue Station, opened by the Premier, was among 12 QFES facilities completed last financial year.”

    On top of the new firefighters, Mr Crawford said QFES would be deploying 180 new urban and rural fire appliances (119 for the Rural Fire Service, and 61 for Fire and Rescue) across the state under a $44.3 million 2018-19 Budget commitment.

    “This will mean the Palaszczuk Government will have delivered more than 280 new QFES appliances over the past two financial years,” Mr Crawford said.

    “More than 100 new fire appliances were rolled out in the 2017-18 financial year under a $40 million Palaszczuk Government commitment to renew QFES’ fleet.

    “Nine of the 44 appliances delivered to Fire and Rescue Crews under the 2017-18 fleet renewal program, and seven of the 62 appliances delivered to the Rural Fire Service, were in the Central Region,” he said.

    ENDS

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