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Aliesha is all fired up about her job

Aliesha Ragen pops in at Coffs Harbour Fire Station to get a few tips before heading off to the Gold Coast.
Aliesha Ragen pops in at Coffs Harbour Fire Station to get a few tips before heading off to the Gold Coast.



ALIESHA Ragen can't wait for the hot challenge awaiting her next year.

The Coffs Harbour 20-year-old is the first-ever female to be selected to serve in the Gold Coast region with the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service.

She is one of 70 people offered positions out of a staggering 1000 applications, and is one of only two females to make it into this year's intake.

Aliesha knew she had to become a firefighter after seeing a television documentary a couple of years ago on women in the fire brigade.

"When I saw it I thought 'that's me'," she said.

"It's unbelievable what you can do and where you can go. You can parasail out of buildings and jump out of planes.

"I'm so excited. It's so hard for girls to get in because a lot of girls have trouble passing the physical.

"I've always wanted to have an outside job, and I've always been very physical and fit. It ties in with everything I've wanted to do."

She has worked hard on gaining selection for the past 12 months which has included a gruelling fitness examination.

She managed to show the guys how it was done in challenges like carrying a 32kg weight on her shoulders, climbing 180 steps in three minutes, pulling ladders up and down and smashing down a door with a heavy weight on her shoulders.

Aliesha has also had to pass mathematics and mechanical exams and answer questions on aspects of firefighting.

"I did think I'd get in because they said if you pass the physical, you've got a good chance," she said.

"You have to be keen. Some people take 10 years to get in."

She starts her 13 weeks of training on January 9 in Brisbane before being posted to her station.

"The job is going to be very, very hard but very rewarding. Everyone I've talked to has loved the job," she said.

Aliesha completed Year 12 in 2002 at John Paul College and took a year off to work in summer camps in the United States.

Last year, she completed a university degree in sports management at Tweed Heads.



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