Adrenalin junkie keen for challenge
MOST GIRLS wouldn't want a job as firie, but for Gladstone Fire Station's newest recruit Kristal Johnston, it's her ideal job.
She's not like most women ? she has become one of only about 17 other full-time female fire fighters throughout Queensland.
At only 22, it's no easy task and Kristal had to pass rigorous selection and testing procedures only to be put on an applicant list and wait to be offered a position.
'It's something I always wanted to do,' Kristal said. 'I'm a bit of an adrenalin junkie and I like a challenge.'
Kristal started out as an auxiliary in Biloela, completed four months training in Brisbane, and nearly four years of on-the-job training to become a Fire Protection Officer level 1 in six months.
It's enough to put most people off and employment in a male-dominated profession even had Kristal a little worried.
But Gladstone Fire Station staff welcomed her with their easygoing nature and it's just the fires she has to worry about.
'It's going to be a pretty bad fire season by the look of it but I'm looking forward to it,' Kristal said.
One thing is for sure, nothing will dampen her enthusiasm. 'I love it,' Kristal said.
Emergency Services Minister Pat Purcell said fire fighters such as Kristal played a vital role in our community and they could not be undervalued.
'Our fire fighters do a wonderful job and are a very important part of the community here,' he said.