Shannon Airport to put new firefighters through their paces after major investment

After what was described as an "exhaustive selection process", 500 applicants has been reduced to 10.

Shannon Airport to put new firefighters through their paces after major investment

Shannon Airport has become the first airport in Ireland to take delivery of two new state-of-the-art High Reach Extendable Turret (HRET) fire tenders.

After what they described as an "exhaustive selection process", 500 applicants has been reduced to 10.

The 10, who are aged in their 20s and 30s, as they train for the combined role of airport police and fire personnel.

The group will undergo an "intensive" 12-week training programme which will equip them to begin work in.

Pat O’Brien, Chief Officer Fire & Rescue, Airport Police Fire Service, Shannon Airport says the mid-west is benefiting from the latest technology:

“It is a new era for the Airport Police and Fire Service in Shannon and we are looking forward to the recruits entering the service.

"Their training programme is intensive and has benefitted hugely from significant investment in the very latest technology and training aids. Over 500 people applied for just ten positions, which is a testament to the calibre of the team we have assembled," he said.

“Our recruits come from all walks of life, including a painter, a panel beater, strength and conditioning coach and paramedic," he added, pointing out that the recruits have come from all over the country.

Mr O'Brien explained the importance of the investment.

“Conventional fire tenders require that firefighters be put into the risk area to fight aviation fires. However, the new HRET appliance reduces this requirement as fires can be extinguished remotely by operating the HRET from the vehicle cab, allowing the application of water, foam and dry chemical directly to the seat of the fire.

“The new fire tenders use cutting edge technology and will be equipped with a thermal imaging camera mounted on the HRET to allow firefighters identify the hottest part of the aircraft, key vital knowledge that is needed to suppress and extinguish aviation fires as quickly and efficiently as possible," he added.

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