Training together to keep the country safe

From the rock of Gibraltar, along the green coast of the Isle of Man, to the sandy beaches of Tyne and Wear.

Firefighters are working tirelessly to respond to emergencies and keep their communities safe.

But for many it’s at the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service (TWFRS) training centre that they first learn the ropes.

The Service this week said 22 new firefighting recruits had passed out following a gruelling 14-week training course in Washington.

Two of those trainee firefighters were being trained on behalf of the Isle of Man and Gibraltar Fire and Rescue Services, as they chose TWFRS as the Service to bring their recruits up to speed.

FFs Jack Roberts and Nicholas Gracia were successful in completing their training and will now return to Gibraltar and the Isle of Man.

Today (Monday) Chief Fire Officer Chris Lowther, of TWFRS, praised the two trainee firefighters and said the decision to train them in Tyne and Wear showed the quality of the course.

He said “It’s great to see how highly regarded the training course is here in Tyne and Wear by services

“As a sector, fire and rescue services will always look to work collaboratively for the benefit of our communities, as the trainee firefighters on this course have done.

“Our course is tough but it produces some of the best firefighters in the world and I am so proud of each and every one of those who has passed out.

“For Jack and Nicholas, being so far away from home must have been incredibly isolating but the camaraderie of the course is like nothing else.

“I want to thank my colleagues in Gibraltar and the Isle of Man for the faith they have shown in Tyne and Wear.

“I can’t wait to hear about how Jack and Nicholas get on in their careers and hope that the friends they’ve made on this course are friends for life.”

Firefighter training involves teaching trauma care, how to operate a fire pump, hose running, Road Traffic Collison (RTC) rescue, First Aid, how to conduct safe and well visits and much more.

The trainees have undergone weekly firefighting drills, talks from our Prevention and Education team, written exams and a rigorous fitness regime to ensure they are prepared to protect the public.

Chief Fire Officer Mark Christian, of the Isle of Man Fire & Rescue Service, wished to congratulate all 22 firefighters who have successfully completed the 14-week training course in Washington.

He said, “I would like to formally welcome all 22 recruit firefighters into the Fire & Rescue Service family and I hope that they all go on to have a safe and successful career severing their local communities.

“I would also like to take the opportunity to thank CFO Lowther and all the team at Barmston Mere Training Centre who have put together a fantastic course.”

Chief Fire Officer Colin Ramirez from the Gibraltar Fire & Rescue Service said “We are extremely grateful to CFO Lowther and the wider TWFRS family for making this possible and for providing our recruit, now Firefighter Gracia, with solid foundations for what will hopefully be a safe and prosperous career”.

“I truly hope all recruits treasure this experience and never forget both the good and tough moments they have shared throughout these 14 weeks”.

“I am sure these new recruits will embrace what they have been trained to do, at times putting their own lives at risk to help someone in need.

“This is something admirable and as such, have so much respect for each and every one of them, for choosing this career path”.

“I wish them all the very best in their respective careers”

Whole time recruitment for firefighters at TWFRS will re-open in 2024 and those interested in the career can pre-register for alerts on the TWFRS website now.