Becoming A Firefighter
It takes a special kind of person to be a firefighter: someone with courage, dedication to duty and a commitment to helping others, even if it means placing themselves in potentially dangerous situations. However, if you possess these qualities, it can also be one of the most rewarding careers you could hope to have, so if you are genuinely interested in joining your local fire brigade, it is definitely a career choice worth pursuing. In this guide, “Becoming a Firefighter: Where to Start”, we take a detailed look at the basic requirements and how to go about applying to join your local fire brigade if you think you meet these requirements.
How to Become a Firefighter: The First Steps
The first thing to do if you would like to pursue your dream of becoming a firefighter is to find out whether you meet the basic requirements, as laid out in the brigade’s eligibility checklist. At the time of writing, these are as follows:
- You Must Be Over 17 ½ Years Old – When you apply, you must meet this minimum age requirement. There is no maximum age limit: as long as you are over 17 ½, you are eligible to apply.
- You Are a UK Citizen or a Permanent Resident – You must either be a UK citizen or a permanent resident with no restrictions on the type of work you can perform in the United Kingdom.
- You Have No Unspent Criminal Convictions – In common with all the emergency services, the fire brigade insists that all candidates have a record free of unspent criminal convictions. If you have any doubts about the current state of your record, you can apply for a Enhanced Disclosure Check and Barring Service (DBS) check before you apply to join the local fire brigade. We offer a DBS check online application service that you can take advantage of if you would like to put your mind at rest.
- You Are Happy to Obtain an LGV Licence – Your local fire brigade will expect you to train for and pass the LGV test within your first 3 years as a firefighter. This is so that you will be able to drive a fire engine as and when required.
- You Are Willing to Shave Whenever on Duty – If you are a male and you wish to join your local fire brigade, you must be willing to be clean shaven whenever you are on duty. This is to ensure that the breathing apparatus you are issued with will fit properly.
If you meet all of the above requirements to become a firefighter, you will now need to find out when your local fire brigade is having its next recruitment period. It will be during this time that you can apply to become a firefighter.
DBS Check Online Application Assistance
At The Check People, we specialise in providing expert assistance to prospective employees who would like to obtain a DBS check online and to employers in all sectors and industries who would like to run checks on job candidates. We can make sure that all of the details you submit in your application are correct, thereby ensuring that nothing slows down the process. You will only be able to apply for a basic DBS check on your own but any unspent convictions will appear on this check so it will be good enough for the purpose of making sure that you meet the requirements to become a firefighter. The fire brigade you apply to join will request a check for their own records but many people prefer to apply for a check beforehand, to avoid any unnecessary embarrassment.
Additional Qualities You Will Require
In addition to a clean record with no unspent convictions, and the requirements listed above, you will need the following skills, qualities and abilities:
- A Flexible Attitude – Firefighters are expected to perform a wide variety of duties and to pitch in and help whenever necessary. A flexible attitude is therefore a crucial quality for all applicants.
- Leadership Qualities – People who are not afraid to take the lead in emergency situations are highly sought after by fire brigades, for obvious reasons.
- Organisational Skills – The ability to manage your time effectively and to remain well-organised even when under pressure will help you to meet the challenges of fire fighting.
- Ability to Work as Part of a Team – Firefighters tackle fires and other emergencies in tightly-knit teams so it is vital that you are able to function well as part of a team.
If your local brigade is currently recruiting and you would like to speed up your online DBS check application, please contact us whenever convenient. It will be our pleasure to help you check that you meet this part of the requirements to become a firefighter and to answer any questions you may have about DBS check applications in general.