Date: 25th February, 2020
As part of the NFCC National on-call firefighter awareness week which runs from 2nd March, firefighters from firefighters in Mere, Tisbury and Gillingham are joining forces and giving you the chance to ‘have a go’ at becoming an on-call firefighter at an event taking place next week. Fire crews will be at Mere Fire Station from 11am-2pm on 7th March to encourage local people to become on-call firefighters.
Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service needs new on-call recruits to provide fire cover at locations across Dorset and Wiltshire, but particularly in Tisbury, Mere, and Gillingham. Contracted hours can vary, but on-call personnel usually make themselves available for between 40 and 120 hours per week. Between them, each fire station team will provide cover for weekdays, evenings, nights and weekends.
On-Call Support Officer Justin French, who is organising the event, said: “The easiest way to see if being a firefighter is for you is to come along, have a chat with the crew and try your hand at different things. There will be opportunity to cut up a car, try on breathing apparatus, climb a ladder and do the national firefighter selection tests for carrying equipment.”
He added: “On-call firefighters receive the same training and development as wholetime colleagues, and we can be called to all manner of emergencies, including fires, road traffic collisions, animal rescues and flooding. The pay does vary, depending on how much cover you give, but it is fantastically rewarding to be a part of your community and to be in a position to help people. Mere fire station are looking for on-call firefighters to cover during the day so if you work in the town and you think you could provide cover during your working hours, please come along and have a chat with the crew.”
In order to be on-call, you will need to be local to your fire station to respond when your pager goes off. This can be from home or work, and employers can benefit from a firefighter’s training – such as first aid, manual handling, a greater understanding of health & safety in the workplace, and enhanced team spirit.
As well as being available to chat about being an on-call firefighter, they will also be offering fire safety advice and accepting requests for Safe & Well visits.
If you are unable to attend this event you can find out more about becoming an on-call firefighter at www.dwfire.org.uk/be-one-of-us