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Firefighter Career FAQ

This section includes frequently asked questions (FAQs) about firefighting as a career in North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service (NYFRS).

  1. Who can join?
  2. How do I apply to become a wholetime firefighter?
  3. How do I apply to become a retained (on call) firefighter?
  4. What are the age limits?
  5. Are there height limits?
  6. What qualifications are needed?
  7. If invited for interview, what questions will be asked?
  8. Are there any tests prior to interview?
  9. Is there a medical examination?
  10. Which station will I be based at if I am appointed as a wholetime firefighter?
  11. What hours of duty will I be required to work as a wholetime firefighter?
  12. What hours of duty will I be required to work as a retained (on call) firefighter?

Who can join?

We are an inclusive employer with equality, diversity and fairness at the heart of our values. We welcome applications from individuals across all backgrounds and those from under represented groups and ethnic minorities.

How do I apply to become a wholetime firefighter?

Vacancies for inter-service transfers of Firefighters are currently advertised on our website where an application pack is available to download.  The closing date for receipt of completed applications is noon on Friday 2nd February 2018. 

How do I apply to become a retained (on call) firefighter?

You can download an application pack from our website.  Detailed information regarding completion of the application pack is available within the information pack. 

What are the age limits?

For the role of Firefighter, applicants must be at least age 18 years of age at the date of appointment.  There is no upper age limit.

Are there height limits?

For the role of Firefighter, there are no maximum or minimum height limits.

What qualifications are needed?

No formal qualifications are required.

If invited for interview, what questions will be asked?

It is a good idea to find out as much as possible about North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service if you are invited for interview. This website provides a vast amount of information on the Service and the day to day duties of a firefighter. We conduct behavioural style interviews where the main aim is to gather examples of when and how you have used skills that are important for the role of a firefighter. There are five areas which are assessed:

  • Working with others: This is about working effectively with a variety of people, whether they are in your team or in the community.
  • Commitment to excellence: This is about adopting a conscientious and proactive approach to work, and achieving and maintaining excellent standards.
  • Commitment to development: This is about being committed to, and being able to develop, yourself and others.
  • Commitment to diversity and integrity: This is about understanding and respecting other people's differences and treating people fairly and ethically.
  • Communicating Effectively: This is about how effectively you verbally deliver information, make yourself understood and how you understand information.

 ‘Communicating effectively' will be assessed by how you communicate within your interview.

Are there any tests prior to interview?

There are both written and physical tests.

Subject to education level, the first stage of the recruitment process involves written tests to assess literacy, numeracy, situational awareness and  problem solving skills.

If you are successful at the written test stage, you will be invited to attend a series of practical and physical tests designed to assess fitness, strength, stamina, co-ordination, the ability to understand and apply information, dexterity, ability to work at heights and in confined darkened spaces. These are physical and job related tasks relevant to a firefighter’s role.

Fitness is assessed using the Chester Step Test.

Is there a medical examination?

Yes.  Applicants are required to attend a medicald designed to ensure that they possess the level of health necessary to undertake the role of a firefighter. It also enables any reasonable adjustments to be identified.

There will be a requirement to obtain a report from an Optician to ensure you meet the vision standards applicable to the role. 

In addition in assessing general health, the medical will also involve drug and alcohol screening.

Which station will I be based at if I am appointed as a wholetime firefighter?

For the current Inter-Service wholetime Firefighter transfer campaign (closing 2nd February 2018), vacancies exist at the following locations:

Shift duty system: Scarborough

Day Crewing duty system: Malton, Northallerton, Ripon, Tadcaster and Whitby.  You should live within a five minute response time if you are attached to a station which operates the day crewing duty system.

Vacancies are also available on the Operational Staffing Reserve.

Please see the FAQ relating to the hours of work for more details on how the different duty systems operate.

What hours of duty will I be required to work as a wholetime firefighter?

Wholetime Firefighters work to either a Shift, Day Crewing, Self Roster or Operational Staffing Reserve

Under the shift duty system four watches operate on a four on, four off working pattern.  You will work an average of 42 hours a week comprising of 2 day shifts and 2 night shifts followed by 4 days off.  Day shifts commence at 08:00hrs and finish at 18:00hrs. Night shifts commence at 18:00hrs and finish at 08:00hrs the following morning.

The day crewing system operates using two watches on a four on, four off working pattern.  You will work an average of 42 hours a week working 4 shifts followed by days off.  When on duty, you will work at the station from 08:00hrs until 18:00hrs, then be on call from 18:00hrs until 08:00hrs.  If you are attached to a day crewed station you must live within a five minute response time.

Firefighters working on the Operational Staffing Reserve maintain deficiencies in crewing levels at wholetime and retained stations which predminantly occur during the daytime on week days.  Staff will generally work Monday to Friday for an average of 42 hours per week.  Where possible advance notice of the location for deployment will be given.

What hours of duty will I be required to work as a retained (on call) firefighter?

As part of your application you will be asked to declare your average weekly availability to attend fire calls. If your availability does not meet the requirements of the station or your address is outside the 1 mile/4 minute response time then your application will not be progressed.

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