Fur-ociously friendly fire brigade mascot
THERE'S new recruit at Goonellabah Fire Station but he doesn't wear a helmet, drive the fire truck or operate a hose.
In fact, he's often curled up relaxing and watching everyone else working.
While he's only had a couple of weeks on the job, his attention to duty has seen him already promoted to the rank of assistant deputy captain.
Meet Fireman Sam, NSW Fire & Rescue's latest and most adorable addition.
According to deputy captain Dean Snape, Fireman Sam, who's ancestry seems to involve a great deal of kelpie blood, was originally dumped as a wee puppy at a Lismore shopping centre over the Christmas holidays.
Mr Snape said the rescue dog was destined to be in the brigade since the moment he was found.
"One of the rangers, Jody Hinds who is also a firefighter, found the stray pup and brought him by the station," Mr Snape said.
"I ended up adopting him, he's now between 10 and 12 weeks old and he comes up when I do station maintenance."
Mr Snape said Fire & Rescue NSW kindly gave permission for Fireman Sam to wear a cape made from old personal protection jacket which bears his rank.
"Fireman Sam has fitted well in as a semi-station mascot as I live nearby and he comes and visits on a regular basis, he's very friendly and pretty well behaved," he said.
"He's also good to have around, everyone's face lights up when he comes over for pat."
Mr Snape said while he's the Goonellabah Fire Stations' "official unofficial mascot," despite his moniker, Fireman Sam was a station-only animal and does not accompany crews when they are out on duty.
And while Mr Snape's family footwear may be at risk from a friendly chew, so far Fireman Sam has not attempted to gnaw any of the steel capped boots at the fire station.