History of the Civil Protection Malta
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History of the Civil Protection Malta

The Civil Protection Department in Malta was founded in 1996 but did not function as a Fire and Rescue service till January 2000.
In 1996 the Italian Government donated a number of fire engines to the Maltese Government which together with the already existing fleet complimented to set up the Department of Civil Protection for the first time. These fire engines were handed to the Malta Police Corps Fire Brigade in order to strenghten its firefighting and rescue capabilities. This was done until the Civil Protection Department could recruit its personnel in order to be able to take over from the Police Corps.
The handover from the Police Corps to the Civil Protection Department regarding the Fire and Rescue took place on the 15th of January 2000. The ceremony was held at Xemxija fire station, where the then Minister of Interior Dr. Tonio Borg thanked the Police members who served through out the years and gave sterling service to the Maltese community. 

The Civil Protection Department has four fire stations in Malta, a fire station in Gozo and a Marine section. There are also a number of sub sections within the department which cater for Hazardous Material (HAZMAT), Urban Search and Rescue including the Dogs section and a Humanitarian Aid Unit. In 2004 the Government of Malta enacted a legislation where the Civil Protection Department could recruit within its ranks a number of Volunteers to serve and assist the department in its functions.

The General Head Quarters of the Civil Protection Department is located at Ta’ Kandja L/O, Siġġiewi,  where one can find the Administration section and the Operations Control Centre.
Since its' inception, the Civil Protection Department has responded to a number of emergencies, both man made and natural and has co-ordinated its response with the Police, Health, the Armed Forces of Malta and NGO's.

The CPD officers have been trained  both locally and abroad with various entities in order to specialise in various emergencies issues.

Directors / Heads of the Civil Protection Malta
The department was headed by various Directors' during the past seventeen years. The directors were all politically appointed except for the current Director Mr Emanuel Psaila.  They all served in the civil service and or military service within the goverment service before joining the Civil Protection.

     Mr Joe Micallef 1995 - 2000
Mr Joseph Micallef joined the civil service in 1958 at the age of 20 with the Agricultural department. He served in various government departments both in Malta and UK during his long career of 42 years. In 1989 he was appointed as a member of the Civil Protection committee until 1991. In 1992 he was appointed secretary of the Civil Protection Directorate. In 1995 he was assigned the duties to set up the Civil Protection Department. He was assisting in policy developments, organizational and operational structures, liaising with legal offices in drafting Civil Protection Law and planning and directing and executing a training program re Civil Protection issues. In 1996 he was appointed as the 1st Director of the Civil Protection Department until the year 2000. Mr Micallef is married and has two children.  
     Lt. Col Peter Cordina 2000 - 2010
Lt. Colonel Peter Cordina was enlisted in the Malta Police Force in 1967 and promoted to Police Inspector in 1974. He was transferred to the Armed Forces of Malta in 1979 in the rank of Captain.  He was later promoted to Lt. Colonel in 1990. In 1992 he was re-transferred to the Malta Police Force to the rank of Senior Inspector where he served in different sections but notably in the Administrative Law Enforcement. In 1997 Lt. Colonel Peter Cordina was appointed as Director of the Corradino Correctional Facility until the year 2000, when he was appointed as the second Director of Civil Protection Department. He retired on pension from the service in January 2010.
     Mr Patrick Murgo 2010 - 2013
 Director Mr Patrick Murgo.jpg
Mr Patrick Murgo started his career as Lt. in the Armed Forces of Malta and subsequently served as a Manager in the Civil Protection between 1998 and 2005. In 2005, he joined the Malta International Airport as Head of the Fire Section. In 2009, Mr Murgo, returned to the Civil Protection Department as Deputy Director and subsequently he was appointed Director of Civil Protection Department in 2010 until 2013. 
     Mr John Rizzo 2013 - 2016
Mr John Rizzo served the Malta Police Force for thirty seven years. He joined the Police Force in 1976 and throughout all these years was promoted through all the ranks, until 2001 when he was appointed the Commissioner of Police. In April 2013 he was assigned the duties as Head of the Civil Protection.
     Mr Emanuel Psaila 2017 -
Mr Psaila.jpg 
Mr Emanuel Psaila joined the Civil Protection Department upon its inception in 1998, as one of its very firstrecruits. He served for 16 years as an Assistance and Rescue Officer at the Corradino Fire Station. He was the President of the Civil Protection Association for 14 years, during which he was instrumental in ensuring that CPD personnel receive a pension upon completion of 25 years of service. He studied at the University of Malta, obtaining a BA in 2009 and a Masters in 2012. In 2015 he was assigned to a managerial role within the CPD, taking charge of public relations and communications. He was later promoted to the position of Deputy Director. Following John Rizzo’s retirement in October 2016, he was entrusted with the role of Acting Director. On 28th April 2017 he became the 5th Director of the Civil Protection Department.