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Fire Service promotes eight to lieutenant

Leadership positions: six people have been promoted to lieutenant by the Bermuda Fire and Rescue Services recently. Shown from left are Kevin Santucci, BFRS chaplain, Lloyd Burchall, chief fire officer, Paul Dill, Anthony Caisey, Russann Francis, Scott Quinn, Jamal Albuoy, Dave Burgess and Wayne Caines, the national security minister. Not present were Raymond Masters and Troy Brimmer (Photograph supplied)

A total of eight firefighters have been confirmed as lieutenants at a special ceremony.

The event celebrated the men and women who retained their positions at the Bermuda Fire and Rescue Services after a year in the role.

Lieutenant Russann Francis, 51, now the highest-ranking woman officer in the service, said: “I feel honoured to have made it and I will be diligently working towards my next promotion, which would make me the first divisional officer.”

She added that she was only the second woman lieutenant in the service’s history and one of just three women in its ranks.

She said that she had been a firefighter for 23 years and looked forward to spending more time in the service of Bermuda.

Lieutenant Francis explained: “I’m a server and I do this for my community, so as long as the department has good skilled leaders we are serving our community as best as we can.

Lieutenant Francis added: “I’m happy to be one of those leaders.”

Chief fire officer Lieutenant Lloyd Burchall told the group at the confirmation event, held at Hamilton Fire Station last Friday, that their positions will create new challenges and responsibilities.

He said: “As one fellow told me when I was in the UK Fire College, they don’t put these patches on your shoulder just so you could make more money.

“You’re going to get more responsibility and we’re going to expect a lot more commitment from you.”

He added: “We’re going to have our work cut out for us and I’m glad that these young people have put themselves forward with dedication, learning their skills and making that commitment.”

Wayne Caines, the national security minister, thanked the graduates for their leadership and dedication to the safety of Bermuda.

He said: “Some of the things that we take for granted in our society is the fact that we have a beautiful way of life and it’s attributed to men and women such as yourselves. The country relies on you and your service to the people of Bermuda and we thank you for what you do.”