Warwickshire Fire and Rescue covers the County of Warwickshire with 17 stations, 12 of which have an on-call commitment.
On-call firefighters offer a set number of hours a week where they are available to respond to any incidents that may occur.
Although not based on fire stations, they usually live or work in their local community and carry a pager, so when they get a call, they are ready to respond to emergencies. They use the same appliances and equipment as wholetime firefighters. The difference is that on-call firefighters are available in their homes or workplaces rather than at a fire station.
Applicants to the role come from all walks of life. The most important attributes are common sense, self-motivation, compassion, and teamwork.
As part of the role, on-call firefighters receive an annual wage plus additional payment for attending drill nights and incidents.
On-call firefighters provide an agreed number of hours per week to serve their local community. We have a flexible approach to the provision of cover recognising that everyone needs to maintain a healthy work/life balance. The amount of cover provided can vary between 40 and 120 hours per week- although most of our on-call firefighters provide around 60 hours each week. This role offers flexible hours and could suit people with childcare responsibilities. We would like you to commit to a certain number of hours every week, but there will be some flexibility depending on the availability of the rest of the team to change hours of cover.
On average you’ll be called out about two-three times a week although the station areas do vary quite a lot, and some are much busier or quieter than others. There can also be a considerable seasonal variation, hot summers will give rise to lots of grass and crop fires, and prolonged wet periods may bring lots of flooding incidents. No two days or calls are ever the same!
When you are on call
You can pretty much lead your normal life – go to the shops or visiting relatives and the like, but you must make sure that you carry your pager and that you can still get to the station within five minutes of a call.
The Service does have a drugs and alcohol policy which is enforced by ‘for cause’ testing. Therefore, you must be fit for duty whenever you are on call.
Essential requirements for the role:
- You must be able to reach your local station within five minutes of a call or if you work remotely there is the opportunity to do your job from a local station in which instance you would be eligible despite living further away
- Aged 18 and over
- A team player
- Attend a drill night once a week
- Reasonable level of personal fitness
- Be passionate about serving your community
Myths about being an on-call firefighter that we want to expel:
- There is no maximum or minimum height
- There is no upper age limit
- No previous experience or formal qualifications are required due to the comprehensive training programme on-call firefighters receive.