Fire service recruiting

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NORTHERN Ireland Fire & Rescue Service (NIFRS) is encouraging more women across Northern Ireland to consider firefighting as a career, with the launch of its recruitment campaign for full-time firefighters.

The number of female firefighters has been steadily increasing over the years in Northern Ireland and NIFRS now has 46 female firefighters, 25 of whom are full-time.

Chris Kerr, Deputy Chief Fire Officer of the Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service said: “Our recruitment campaigns always reflect the high public esteem in which we are held as an Emergency Service as we never have any problem attracting large numbers of high quality applicants. What we really would like, however, is for more females in Northern Ireland to become firefighters – and applying is taking that first step.

“We have a specific message for females across Northern Ireland in this recruitment drive - being a firefighter is a remarkable, challenging and rewarding career and it is an equally viable long term career option for both women and men.

“With career-long training and development, excellent promotion opportunities, a very competitive salary and benefit scheme, becoming a Firefighter is something we want to encourage more women to consider. This is not just a job for men.

“The job of a Firefighter has changed dramatically over the years. Today we provide a much broader fire and rescue service to the people of Northern Ireland and respond to much more than fires. We respond to road traffic collisions and other types of specialist rescue incidents such as chemical spillages, rope rescue incidents, collapsed buildings etc. Our proactive community engagement and education work is also a big part of the job as we want to help keep people safe and prevent fires and other types of emergency incidents occurring in the first place.”

All candidates who apply and who meet the minimum educational qualification of GCSE Maths and English (A-C Grade) will be invited to attend a multi-stage fitness test. Successful candidates from the fitness test will go forward for shortlisting based on their application form and if shortlisted will be invited to a practical test. If successful in that stage candidiates will then progress to the interview stage.

It is anticipated that the first course of trainee firefighters will be appointed and will begin their 18 week training course at the Fire & Rescue Training Centre early in 2012.

For further information about the recruitment campaign and to download applications packs go to the NIFRS website www.nifrs.org. The closing date for applications is Thursday, August 11, at 3pm.