Comox Fire Rescue

Prevention, Emergency Response, and the Comox Fire Training Centre

Comox Fire Rescue provides a variety of preventive and emergency services to a population of over 18,000 in an area of 16 square miles. This includes the Town of Comox, the Comox Fire Protection Improvement District, the Bates Huband Local Service Area (Regional District of Comox-Strathcona), and the Comox Indian Band. They also operate the Comox Fire Training Centre, which trains firefighters from all over Vancouver Island, and even parts of BC and the rest of Canada. The training centre is certified by the JIBC.

Meet our Members: Richard Quinn

This week on Meet our Members, we interview Richard Quinn!

CFR: Could you provide a brief background of your fire service career?

My background with the fire service is limited at this point.  I applied and was accepted as a new recruit with Comox Fire Rescue, during their recruitment drive, fall of 2015. I have a very diverse background in farming, medical laboratory technology and holistic medicine, giving me a wide set of skills and experiences to draw from and offer. I hope to continue working, learning and honing my skills within this exciting and rewarding  profession.

CFR: Was there any specific event that first interested you in becoming a fire fighter?

There was no specific event that prompted me to actively pursue becoming a fire fighter and first responder. It was more an accumulation of desire to serve my community and help others,  my drive for challenges and adventure, and an opportunity combined with the time to dedicate to this important career and its ongoing training. My brother, (Andy Quinn)who is currently an active member of Courtenay Fire department, has long regaled me with stories of the many challenges and rewards of being a fire fighter. I knew what I was in for when I joined Comox Fire Rescue, and feel privileged to have the opportunity to serve.

CFR: What is your favourite part of volunteering for Comox Fire Rescue (or working in the valley in general)?

There are so many positive things I can say about this organization. First and foremost would be its members. Their level of professionalism, integrity and dedication is truly outstanding and very contagious.  I have felt welcomed and valued from the moment I was accepted as a recruit. The amount of knowledge and experience at this station is humbling but they always find the time and patience to answer questions, offer encouragement,  and pass along their lifetime of fire/rescue skills and knowledge. I have made many new amazing friends here.  It truly feels like an extended family.

CFR: Outside of the fire department, what are your interests/hobbies?

My passions and hobbies mostly involve enjoying and exploring the many outdoor gifts the Island life has to offer. Snowboarding, mountain biking, paddle boarding, trail running, mountain climbing and kayaking, all help feed my need for adventure and adrenaline.
My home life is shared with my lovely girlfriend Heather,  where we enjoy gardening and quiet moments together. Travel has always been something we both enjoy. Outside of Comox Fire Rescue, I am employed as a Medical Laboratory Technologist at St. Joseph’s General Hospital.

CFR: What are some major changes you have seen in the fire service industry during your career? 

I can’t speak extensively on these questions as my experience with the fire service is relatively new.  What I have learned is how dynamic and changing the fire environment is. From changes in building construction materials and techniques to the increased use of plastics and petroleum based materials in indoor furnishings, fires now burns faster, hotter and far more unpredictably than the past.  The same can be said about the changing size, intensity and unpredictability of wild fires as witnessed by the recent Fort MacMurray fires.

CFR: If you could change one thing about the fire service, what would it be?

The need for the  highest levels of training standards and on-going education is an essential for fire fighter safety and effective protection of the public and property.  I am blessed to be stationed at such an outstanding training facility. The ongoing education of the public on fire safety and prevention is also incredibly important work.

Chief Schreiner states: Richard has been a very good addition to our team. His commitment and dedication has been outstanding. He is very quickly and successfully working his way toward full certification to the National Fire Protection Association, firefighter standard, NFPA 1001/2. Thanks for being on our team Richard!

Comox Fire Rescue

1870 Noel Ave, Comox, BC, V9M 2K9, Canada