We spoke to Mark who is working at Curragh mine, affectionately known as Curragh-dise where he works week on week off 12 hour shifts, week on days then week on nights. Mark is CPAFR’s longest serving fire & rescue employee and has been with the group since 2012, so he was there at the inauguration of CPA Fire & rescue service and is about to reach his 10 year milestone in January.
Mark was recommended by Kevin Waterman.
What is your professional background?
I have been an emergency services professional for 17 years, prior to that I worked in marine accessories but this this my profession.
Where are you working now?
I am currently working at Curragh, I have been here since the contract started (4 years). I am a relieving supervisor, I fill in gaps where required. I have worked mining, oil and gas, power stations, and shutdowns.
What other CPA Group sites have you worked?
I also help out where needed including at CS Energy, Shell, Kogan Creek and Callide power stations. Prior to Curragh other work was at Kogan Creek, BMA sites and the initial Shell contract.
What are your primary responsibilities?
In addition to the fire and rescue work, I also contribute to Security and Medical services as part of our contracted role at one of the two access points. The primary role is access control to the site. Curragh has a volunteer ERT onsite and we have tried very hard to integrate them into our work, letting them provide leadership utilising their site experience. The volunteers assist us in rescue operations as SMEs on the site, they will have specific tasks with our support for high risk. The ERT team are important, we want them to feel part of the team, professionally respected and a valued as a complementary skill set to our ERT group.
What do you find most challenging or fulfilling in your role?
The diversity of people you meet and ensuring you manage that well is critical. I am trying to get on the front foot, being more preventative rather than just reactive. There is a focus on working on compliance with site and industry requirements including pre-starts, vehicle checks, fitness for works– all of that is looked after by us.
I enjoy working with mates. It starts from the top, having the 24 hour support – developing relationships with other team members certainly makes the job a lot easier, it is important to listen to
other people’s views.
And what do you do in your spare time?
I live in NSW just over the border as part of what was the border bubble but I have permission as an essential worker. I fly out of Brisbane after driving from home.
I do volunteer for the VRA (volunteer rescue association) which enhances my skills and allows me to put back into the community. I also volunteer for the NSW Rural Fire Service.
I am married and have a young 4 year old and a 6 week old baby. Family is a big part of my life, spending quality time at home is important to me. When I was working on a 2 weeks on / 2 weeks off roster we did a lot of travel to places like Fiji. We like to donate to local Fijian communities.
I find I am currently spending a lot of time at the beach with the family, we are busy with our new baby and loving it!
What would your manager say?
My manager is Kevin Waterman, he would probably say ‘you’re fired’. I talk a lot, I am a team player and I do not hide my feelings as I am passionate about the job.
I have been very fortunate to have worked as Mark’s manager since August 2012. Mark has worked on numerous short and long term projects including QGC, Shell, Curragh, BMC and a variety of short term shutdown projects. His skillset and experience have greatly contributed to the success of the fire and rescue division and his knowledge of our equipment from satellite phones, rope rescue gear to the operation of our fire appliances has been exceptional. As his manager, I value the experience Mark brings to the role and to his coworkers and our clients to represent CPA Group and its core values.