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Faces of Rowville - David Rawson


Many of us have been in a position where we have been driving along and seen the flashing lights behind us, only to look in the rear view mirror and see a fire truck whizzing past on it's way to a job. We see the firefighter in the uniform, but who are these people? Here at Rowville CFA we want to give you the opportunity to get to know the people in the uniform, so please allow us to present the people that serve your community. This month we introduce one of our volunteers, Dave Rawson.


Why did you join the CFA?
I joined the CFA because I wanted to do something worthwhile for my community and I wanted to learn again, to build on skills that I already had.

When did you join the CFA?
I joined Rowville in 2007, in my ignorance at the time I didn't realise that CFA was a volunteer position and was actually looking to join the SES. I have absolutely no regrets in my choice though.

What have you gained from being a CFA Volunteer?
Confidence. I never thought of myself as a leader but after years of volunteering and gaining skills, I felt I owed it to myself and my comrades to at least have a go at leadership through the CFA crew leader program. The CFA 2010 Challenge helped me gain confidence, friendship/camaraderie, a heap of knowledge and information and it gave me new aspirations, such as to become a Crew leader. It has helped me challenge myself with support and to be a valuable contribution to the Rowville community. This is a program I would recommend to all member, Juniors and Seniors. Every time the truck goes out I feel that "I want to make something better for someone or less worse." I get to interact with people of all ages, from kids to older people and male and female, that is just an amazing experience and I feel very lucky I get to do that.

Can you describes what your role involves in the CFA?
I support the Junior members and it is just great to watch an eleven year old come in wide eyed and leave as a young adult. It is a privilege that I to be a part of that transition and watch that transformation. I am also a Lieutenant and support a duty crew of 10 people. I am responsible for the stations Information Technology and Fire Equipment Maintenance (FEM) which sees myself with the support of other volunteers supplying fire extinguishers to companies. I see myself very much as a team based person and will always fight to support my team and my community, sometimes probably more than myself. I believe that the more experienced members, the more the team benefits and the more the community benefits and thats how I feel I can contribute in my role as a Rowville CFA volunteer.

What is your favourite part of being in the CFA?
It is the education on a whole. You always leave every job (call out) acquiring knowledge, at every job you learn something new and every time you turn out. You are then able to pass on knowledge that you learn to other members.

What is your most memorable call out/job?
Funny, that was probably a false alarm. We had been called to a job reported as a 'plane crash' and we could see a spiralling trial of smoke from around 7,000 feet heading down. We had one truck that had turned out, but several other brigades were also on scene, as were police and we were all racing around looking for this plane. The air traffic controllers were quite emotional about this missing plane and that seemed to support that a plane had gone down, however a call came in from around 50km's where we were conducting our search up near Cardinia Reservoir and it was a report that the "plume" of smoke suspected to be a trail from the missing aircraft was in fact a cloud. I can tell you that to this day I have never seen a cloud so perfectly spiralled and we had reports that an aircraft was missing from the airport, we even got a report of a second plane missing. Turns out the missing plane wasn't missing and it was a cloud after all, I am not sure why the second plane got reported as missing. That is the frustrating part, we never get to hear about what happened next and we don't get to see the end result. That can be frustrating at times. I guess in terms of fires, the Churchill Park fire is one of my most memorable fires.

What are your hobbies?
I love reading, Information Technology, TV and Films.

I believe you have a very unique hobby?
Yes, my daughter introduced me to Quiddich. We play it two dimensional for now but I envisage it will go three dimensional in the future . My daughter was in the team that went to Canada to play in the Global Games and collected the Silver Medal against the USA. My daughter is also Captain for the 'Blackburn Basilisks.'

Where do you see yourself in five years time?
I hope to be 'Operational' (Still attending emergency calls) in five years time but at the very least I want to stay actively engaged with the CFA. I have obtained my Certificate 4 in Education and Training so that allows me to train and assess others and I want to help support others by giving them the tools to ensure they are confident in doing the job.

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