Cornwall FRS has appointed Philip Martin as their new Assistant Chief Fire Officer. Phil is currently the Area Manager responsible for Prevention, Protection and Road Safety, Corporate Communications and Equalities with Devon & Somerset Fire and Rescue Service (DSFRS) and will take up his new role on 1st January 2015.
Phil joined Somerset Fire Brigade in 1983 at age 16 as a volunteer Junior Firefighter in Minehead. In 1985 he became a whole time Firefighter and moved to Yeovil and following promotions worked at both Taunton and Bridgwater gaining experience across a wide range of specialisms including fire investigation and fire safety legislation.
In 1997 Phil worked in the Plano Fire Department in Texas, USA as part of a UK / USA fire officer exchange programme. He managed the project for the strategic review of the former Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Services and wrote the business case that brought about the voluntary combination of two UK fire and rescue services – this was the first and to date the only merger of this kind.
Since the formation of DSFRS, Phil has worked as a Group Commander in the Somerset Command, managed the two Controls prior to their merger into a central facility. He is passionate about reducing incidents having witnessed too much misery and suffering from victims of fires and other incidents during his career.
Phil developed the award winning Good Point smoke alarm tester and the Firemark interactive fire prevention package which has been made freely available for non-profit use www.firemark.org.uk He led and assisted with the development the DSFRS model for defusing staff following exposure to traumatic incidents.