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Recruiting: Scottish Fire and Rescue Service


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Scottish Fire and Rescue Service announces wholetime firefighter recruitment campaign

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) is set to carry out its first wholetime firefighter recruitment campaign since the national service came into existence on 1 April last year.

Although there may be posts available throughout Scotland, the Service anticipates that workforce planning will dictate the majority of posts will be in the North service delivery area. Further details will be made available when applications open on 7 May.

Chief Officer Alasdair Hay, SFRS, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to join the Service as a wholetime firefighter dealing with emergency incidents and playing a vital role in delivering community safety advice.

“Whilst firefighters are probably best known for responding to 999 emergency calls to tackle fires, the modern day role now involves a much wider range of activities.

“Our crews deal with road traffic collisions, chemical spillages, water rescue operations, flooding incidents, collapsed buildings and much more.

“The ability to deal with these types of incidents is vital but our firefighters perform an equally important role within the area of community safety.

“We recognise that the best way to fight fires is to prevent them from occurring in the first place. This is achieved in a variety of ways including a focus on education, providing relevant information, support and access to our services including home fire safety visits.

“Our crews will visit people’s homes to give fire safety advice, identify potential hazards and explain how to minimise the risks. We also fit smoke detectors where necessary to ensure homes are safer from fire.

“As a firefighter, you could also find yourself supporting education initiatives in schools, youth and community groups and other voluntary organisations.

“Last year we recruited 40 new firefighters from within our own support staff as part of the SFRS commitment to ensuring there would be no compulsory redundancies following the merger of our eight former regional services.

“I recently attended the graduation of these new firefighters and I am delighted to be able to add to this complement with a public recruitment campaign.

“The number one benefit of reform is to protect the frontline. That’s to make sure that we have got firefighters on the fire stations delivering the prevention and emergency response services that the people of Scotland actually rely upon.”

The focus on prevention means that firefighters now spend a large proportion of their time on community safety initiatives, supporting the public to make informed choices to protect themselves from fire and other emergencies. This may involve;

  • Fitting smoke alarms
  • School and community group visits providing education on fire prevention and the dangers of fire
  • Working with local councils to ensure the protection of vulnerable people
  • Carrying out inspections of commercial and industrial premises and providing fire safety advice
  • Visiting people's homes and assessing the risk of fire and advising on how best to protect themselves
  • Working with other emergency services such as the police, ambulance and coastguard providing specialist skills and support when required

Community Safety Minister Roseanna Cunningham said:

“This is a fantastic opportunity to become part of our world class Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, saving lives and working to prevent dangerous incidents happening in the first place. This recruitment drive shows the continued commitment from the SFRS improving the service, especially in the north of Scotland, and keeping communities safe.

“This is in addition to the facilities and investment in the north of Scotland through the SFRS North Service Delivery HQ, 20-25 fire posts being created in Inverness to support the safer firefighter programme, the new Flood and Water Rescue facility in Inverness and the £2 million to be spent on a new Fire Asset Resource Centre for vehicles, equipment and ICT, on the Aberdeen-Dundee corridor.”

Diane Vincent, SFRS Head of People and Organisational Development said: "This is an exciting and challenging opportunity for individuals to provide a vital service to their local community.

“We are committed to achieving fairness and equality of opportunity in employment and service delivery and we welcome suitably skilled applicants from all parts of our communities.

“Our Service is currently under-represented by women and people from our minority ethnic communities and we intend to host a number of positive action open days for these groups further details of which can be found on our website.”

As with all emergency services, we provide a fire and rescue service response 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year.

The service is looking for men and women from all different backgrounds, who are physically fit, have the sensitivity to deal with the public when they are distressed, can solve problems using relevant information and are prepared to commit to what is a demanding but highly rewarding career.

Working as a wholetime firefighter is not just a job. Structured training and development will allow you to maximise your potential, providing you with the chance to progress into specialist roles, such as fire protection, prevention, operational resilience and training. You can get more information on our website .

In addition, for those seeking a career in management, we offer a real opportunity to develop from wholetime firefighter through to middle management and then to a senior management position.

To apply people will need to complete an online application form, which will be available at on 7 May 2014. Those shortlisted will carry out a number of tests with successful candidates proceeding to an interview and a medical check.

SFRS is also currently recruiting for a number of support staff roles and retained duty firefighters who work on-call to provide fire and rescue services as a secondary employment role. You can find out more about recruitment opportunities within the Service on
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