21 new firefighters join Fire Service

Fire Service recruits perform a processional march before formally graduating. - Photo: GIS

Following a week during which firefighters tackled a major blaze at the landfill and dealt with the fallout from a 7.7 magnitude earthquake, the Cayman Islands Fire Service has some reinforcements, with 21 recruits graduating and joining the team.

The new firefighters, who are all Caymanians, took part in a graduation ceremony on Friday, which included a fire and rescue demonstration by the recruits.

“The past week has emphasised to us all that we have a fire service we can be extremely proud of,” Minister for Home Affairs Tara Rivers said at the ceremony.

She added, “Everyone graduating today answered the call to serve and through their commitment and dedication are one step closer to becoming members of our country’s world-class public safety response mechanism.”

The recruits have all completed 20 weeks of fire and rescue training led by Acting Training and Safety Manager John Christian, according to a Government Information Service press release.

The training covered proficiencies in domestic and aerodrome disciplines, “which is essential given the dual function of Central and Cayman Brac Stations”, the release stated.

The recruits were also taught the theoretical side of fire science and given practical live fire experience, “equipping them with skills to tackle incidents from day one as fire fighters”.

Chief Fire Officer Paul Walker welcomed the new fire officers, saying, “They have shown great dedication and perseverance with their training. Their training, of course, will never fully be over as we are constantly reinforcing and enhancing our skills in fire and rescue. Myself and the rest of the Deputy Chief Fire Officers look forward to continuing to develop our newest officers as they begin their careers with the Cayman Islands Fire Service.”

Nine of the new fire officers will be permanently based on Cayman Brac to bolster the Fire Service’s capacity across the Sister Islands.

“Having an additional 21 fire officers available to deploy strengthens our fire and rescue capability and will put less strain on our resources should we have another busy week as we have had recently,” Walker said.

According to the release, the Fire Service will soon begin another recruitment drive, with the aim of adding another 20 fire officers later this year.

Members of the public who wish to apply to become firefighters can visit
www.recruitment.gov.ky.