Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) is calling on local residents who are looking for a new challenge and enjoy working as part of a team to consider joining one of nine fire stations across the county as on-call firefighters.
Recruitment is now underway until 30 April at Lenham, Borough Green, Headcorn, Cranbrook and New Romney fire stations. There are also vacancies for on call staff at Westerham, Edenbridge, Ash-cum-Ridley and Eastchurch.
All kinds of people can be on-call firefighters. Most have other jobs, so it may appeal to both men and women of all ages who are looking for extra shifts, or perhaps need something part-time to fit in with other commitments, such as childcare.
On-call firefighters are paid to be available for an agreed number of hours and during that time they can go about their normal life at home. However, if they are called, they must be able to drop what they are doing and get to the station, to be ready to respond operationally within five minutes. The contracted hours KFRS will offer will be based on what the station needs to deal with the risk in the area.
Requirements include being over 18, physically fit, with good levels of reading and writing and candidates must be able to be operationally ready within five minutes. Full training is provided. Anyone interested can find details of the stations, hours needed, recruitment criteria and a film showing the fitness tests on www.kent.fire-uk.org/oncall.
Sean Bone-Knell, Director at KFRS said: "We want to challenge the stereotype that only a certain sort of person can be an on-call firefighter; this could be a great job for all kinds of people. So if anyone is looking to make a difference in their local community and take on an additional challenge over and above the day job, then this could be for you.
"Over the last couple of years we have made major changes to the Service to meet the challenges of the 21st Century. We are now able to recruit on-call firefighters to work exactly when and where we need them, based on local risk in individual areas. This not only applies to time of day, but also the time of year, for example busy periods such as a dry summer when there are traditionally more fires."
Details of any information sessions or open evenings will be posted on the KFRS Facebook and Twitter sites. Become a fan of KFRS on Facebook www.facebook.com/kentfirerescue or follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/kentfirerescue.