A FIREFIGHTER and a mum of three is urging more women to join the fire service after passing a driving qualification in Droitwich.
Tracy Edwards can now legally get behind the wheel of a fire engine since becoming a qualified Large Goods Vehicle (LGV) driver.
The 40-year-old underwent five days of training at Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue’s Training and Development Centre.
She then returned to her local station in Herefordshire to complete 12 hours of normal driving practice.
Now, she says, it’s a case of building up experience by driving to emergencies and getting used to the sheer size of the fire engine, which is very different from her little Peugeot.
Tracy, who joined the fire service in 2014, said: “I would love to see more women join the service, either full or part time.
“It’s a very rewarding career and there are plenty of opportunities, as I’ve shown.
“I’m a member of the women working group which champions the role of woman firefighters. Our slogan is – ‘a job to be proud of’ – and we really want to encourage more women to join up in an operational role.”
Tracy added that her career highlight is still completing the initial three week mandatory skills training.
“It started me on my journey as a firefighter – something I never thought I’d achieve.”
And from that moment on Tracy quickly acquired experience tackling fires, floods, rescues and road traffic collisions – all while holding down her part time job as a swimming instructor.
Ade Taylor, Tracy’s driving instructor at the centre, added: “It’s been marvellous to to see her develop and advance throughout her time with us.
“I would encourage both men and women to consider the fire service as a career, with its wide range of opportunities available to both sexes.”