The chief officer of the Country Fire Authority in Victoria has stepped down after 42 years of service in emergency management.
Steve Warrington tendered his resignation to Police and Emergency Services Minister Lisa Neville on Thursday.
Ms Neville says she learned a lot from Mr Warrington about bushfires and that the fire chief would be greatly missed.
"While I'm incredibly sad to see Steve leave the CFA, I respect his decision to take time for himself and his family," she said.
"Steve should be immensely proud of his contribution to Victoria and the CFA."
Mr Warrington experienced many major incidents throughout his career, including the Arthurs Seat chairlift collapse and the 2003, 2006, 2007 and 2009 bushfires.
The fire chief led the CFA during the devastating bushfires of the past two summers.
The CFA said in a statement Mr Warrington's work over the years had saved lives.
"Steve has been with CFA through Ash Wednesday, the 2009 Victorian fires and provided strong, expert leadership through the recent 2019/20 fires, minimising the loss of lives and property," the CFA board said in a statement.
In June 2017, Mr Warrington was a recipient of the Australian Fire Services Medal.
Mr Warrington started his career at Chelsea Fire Brigade in 1978 as a volunteer and completed the CFA recruit course in 1983.
He then served 14 years as both a staff member and volunteer, with his final volunteer years spent at Langwarrin.
He was appointed to the dual position of chief executive officer and chief officer of the CFA on May 31, 2019. He was previously appointed Chief Officer on June 30, 2016.
The CFA will appoint an interim CEO in the coming days.
Australian Associated Press