Leading Aircraftman Daniel Payne is passionate about firefighting.

An Air Force reservist aviation firefighter, he was deployed to the ADF’s main operating base in the Middle East region (MER).

“I wanted the experience of deploying on operations because firefighting is my passion and I am lucky to do it as my civilian job and as a reservist,” Leading Aircraftman Payne said.

Back home in Brisbane, Leading Aircraftman Payne is a Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) firefighter at Capalaba Fire Station.

Born on the Gold Coast, it was his first deployment in his Air Force career that began 13 years ago.

“I was 19 and laying tiles as an apprentice wall and floor tiler, but that really wasn’t for me. I wanted to join the military and being an aviation firefighter was the job that appealed the most," Leading Aircraftman Payne said.

After four-and-a-half years at RAAF Base Amberley as a full-time firefighter, he transitioned to the reserve and his civilian job at the QFES.

When he returned to a full-time contract, Leading Aircraftman Payne, partner to Lily and dad to their 18-month-old daughter, Millie, worked in the base Coalition fire and rescue section alongside firefighters from the United Kingdom.

“It’s challenging working together because our procedures are different, but both nations bring our individual skills to the table and come together as one team,” he said.

The firefighting section provides a 24-hour response to a variety of different RAAF, Coalition and host nation aircraft on the airfield and can respond quickly should there be an emergency.

“We also provide support to Camp Baird and the other Coalition camps on base, so I can provide expert advice on structural firefighting which we do all the time back home at work.”