Training and development
Firefighters must be well trained, skilled, and knowledgeable if they are to work safely and effectively in the wide range of operational incidents they are called upon to attend.
Full training is provided and on-call firefighters are trained to deal with the same situations and incidents as full time firefighters. This includes how to use the latest equipment and techniques to undertake a wide range of duties from firefighting to animal rescues and from floods to road traffic collisions.
Initial training gives new on-call firefighters the necessary basic core competencies to enable them to safely attend incidents. Training is delivered in a number of modules spread out over the first three years of service – although some on-call firefighters are able to complete the programme more quickly than this.
The main modules undertaken are:
- On-call firefighter initial
- Breathing apparatus initial
- Fire behaviour and tactical firefighting development
- Tactical ventilation (PPV) initial
- Road traffic collision (RTC) development
- Hazardous materials and environmental protection
- Safe working at height; level 1
- Water rescue
- Manual handling
- Radio communication
After successfully passing your two-week induction, you will become a development firefighter.
Ongoing training involves on-call firefighters attending their station for a two-hour drill (training) period once a week during the evening. After successfully completing on-call development programme, on-call firefighters have the opportunity to undertake courses, both internally and externally, to broaden their existing knowledge of firefighting and rescue.
Within WFRS there is a clear career progression route, as follows:
- Trainee Firefighter
- Development Firefighter (after successful completion of Induction course)
- Competent Firefighter (after three years of service)
- Crew Manager
- Watch Manager