Di Clack

AF&RS investing in me

By Di Clack

Throughout 15 Years’ service, seven as a Firefighter and eight as an operational Crew Manager, I have served at a number of stations including Southmead, Temple, Kingswood & Yate.

When joining Technical Fire Safety (TFS), I was working a five days on, and three days off shift pattern, and before that had previously worked two days & two nights. 

This meant that changing to working Monday to Friday day time with TFS was a really big change to my life and included adjustments to things like child care and dog care.  

But I soon got used to it and enjoyed having evenings and weekends free. However, I’m also an On-Call Crew Manager so I tend to cover these times anyway (love for the job excitement).

The first few weeks were a massive learning curve, as I was introduced to the Fire Safety Order 2005 (FSO) and the Dept. of Communities and Local Government guides (CLG), which would be my type of bible now, ensuring that premises owners and managers are complying with their requirements.

I work independently completing audits, post-fire support and investigating complaints, but also I have the support of the team around me. 

My team have a vast amount of knowledge and this was very useful when I first started and if I come across something out of the norm.

I coach the responsible person to comply with the FSO ensuring that local businesses are successful and flourish. This is good for our economy but I also want to see that all relevant persons are safe. 

Also, I’m protecting our firefighters; they shouldn’t be required to risk their lives to save people from a burning building because the responsible person hasn’t put in place general fire precautions to allow people to have early warning of a fire and to be able to evacuate to a place of safety.

Avon Fire and Rescue Service have invested in me and my training and I have completed a level 4 certificate in Fire Safety, along with passing a number of the IFE qualifications. 

I am really enjoying my role in Technical Fire Safety which has allowed me to increase my knowledge & skills further in Fire Safety, how buildings behave in a Fire situation and Crew Safety.

I feel proud of the work I’m doing and working with the local community where I work and live.