Chief Ken Block resigns after 40 years with Edmonton Fire Rescue

Edmonton's fire chief is stepping down.

Edmonton fire chief moving to Australia after accepting new position

Fire Chief Ken Block announced plans Tuesday to leave Edmonton. (David Bajer/CBC)

Edmonton's fire chief is stepping down.

Ken Block has announced he is resigning from Edmonton Fire Rescue Services to pursue an opportunity in Australia, a city news release said Tuesday.

Block has accepted an offer to become the first fire commissioner of the soon-to-be-established Fire Rescue Victoria.

"We thank Ken for his dedication and commitment at Edmonton Fire Rescue Services for the past 40 years," deputy city manager of citizen services Rob Smyth said in the release.

Block joined Edmonton Fire Rescue as a recruit in 1980. He was appointed fire chief in 2009.

His last day will be Feb. 3, 2020, and recruitment for a replacement will begin immediately, Smyth said.

Block is out of the country, but is expected to be available to media Friday.