Major boost to Beerwah fire station

THE Queensland Government has announced that firefighter numbers will increase by 357 across the state over five years, with 97 more professional firefighters to join the ranks this financial year.

As part of the increase, Beerwah’s fire crew will be boosted by six full-time equivalent positions.

This means the station can transition from an auxiliary-only station to a five-day station staffed by paid firefighters plus auxiliary members.

Minister for Fire and Emergency Services Mark Ryan said more than $86 million would be allocated between now and 2025 to grow the total number of frontline Fire and Rescue Service (FRS) professional firefighters by more than 15 per cent based on current numbers.

“This demonstrates the government’s commitment to ensuring the FRS has the resources it needs to protect the community,” Mr Ryan said.

“This financial year’s growth will see resources directed to enhanced service delivery at Beerwah, Charters Towers and Yarrabilba.”

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Commissioner Greg Leach welcomed the growth of resources and the new crewing model as the organisation continues to evolve to further protect and enhance safety.

“The increase in crewing will now see service delivery at Beerwah, formerly an auxiliary-only station, staffed for five days with continued support of auxiliary firefighters,” Mr Leach said.

United Firefighters Union Queensland secretary John Oliver welcomed the announcement.

“I commend the government for following through on their election commitment to Queensland’s firefighters,” Mr Oliver said.

“The commitment of an additional 357 professional firefighters is the most significant increase in firefighter numbers since 1925 and will go a long way to enhancing the safety and conditions of firefighters.”

Apart from Beerwah, the extra resources this financial year will go Charters Towers, Yarrabilla, Port Douglas, Emerald, Coolum and Kingaroy, with a further 57 new full-time equivalent positions being allocated to regions to enable new crewing models.