VETERAN FIREFIGHTER CALLS TIME ON 38 YEAR CAREER

One of Fire and Rescue NSW’s (FRNSW) most experienced firefighters will hang up his helmet for the final time today after a career spanning almost four decades.


Assistant Commissioner Rob McNeil’s retirement is being recognised with a special marchout ceremony at the City of Sydney Fire Station.


Minister for Emergency Services and Resilience and Minister for Flood Recovery Steph Cooke said Assistant Commissioner McNeil’s world leading expertise in hazardous materials has ensured the safety of the Australian community on countless occasions.


“During his impressive career, Assistant Commissioner McNeil has worked on projects such as the 2000 Sydney Olympics, the 2007 APEC Australia Conference and the 2008 Catholic World Youth Day in Sydney,” Ms Cooke said.


“I’m particularly impressed by the leadership he showed in March 2011 when he was tasked with deploying the Australian Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) Task Force to Japan in the aftermath of a devastating earthquake and tsunami.


“I want to take this opportunity to thank Rob for his dedicated 38 years of service to the people of NSW.”
FRNSW Commissioner Paul Baxter said Assistant Commissioner McNeil’s courage and care for his team during the earthquake and tsunami response was particularly admirable.

“The potential exposure of radiation saw many international rescue teams evacuate their personnel from the complex disaster, but Rob’s expertise and outstanding decision-making allowed the Australian rescue team to complete its mission and return home safely,” Commissioner Baxter said.


“Rob exemplifies leadership and his passion and dedication towards his staff and the community has been second to none. FRNSW wishes him all the best in his retirement.”


Assistant Commissioner McNeil commenced his emergency services career in 1984, spending 13 years as a firefighter at some of Sydney’s busiest stations followed by 25 years as a Commissioned Officer. Over the past decade he has served as an Assistant Commissioner for both metropolitan and regional NSW, accountable for the delivery of fire prevention and suppression, dealing with hazardous materials, rescue and emergency services to industry and the community.

“The potential exposure of radiation saw many international rescue teams evacuate their personnel from the complex disaster, but Rob’s expertise and outstanding decision-making allowed the Australian rescue team to complete its mission and return home safely,” Commissioner Baxter said.


“Rob exemplifies leadership and his passion and dedication towards his staff and the community has been second to none. FRNSW wishes him all the best in his retirement.”


Assistant Commissioner McNeil commenced his emergency services career in 1984, spending 13 years as a firefighter at some of Sydney’s busiest stations followed by 25 years as a Commissioned Officer.

Over the past decade he has served as an Assistant Commissioner for both metropolitan and regional NSW, accountable for the delivery of fire prevention and suppression, dealing with hazardous materials, rescue and emergency services to industry and the community.

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