Firefighter jobs Sheffield: Rallying cry for on-call firefighters to boost numbers at city stations

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If you’ve ever dreamed of being a firefighter, then now could be your chance.

Residents close to Birley and Stocksbridge stations in Sheffield, plus those in Rossington, Askern, Penistone and Dearne are being urged to step up and join their local fire crew, as the county’s fire service launches an on-call firefighter recruitment drive.

New vacancies have arisen at the stations in each of these areas, with more staff needed to keep the fire engines’ wheels turning and to respond to fires, floods, road traffic collisions and other emergency incidents.

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Fire officers say there has never been a better time to join the service and pursue what is a childhood dream for so many people.

A recruitment drive has been launched for on-call firefighters in Sheffield as well as Doncaster, Barnsley and RotherhamA recruitment drive has been launched for on-call firefighters in Sheffield as well as Doncaster, Barnsley and Rotherham
A recruitment drive has been launched for on-call firefighters in Sheffield as well as Doncaster, Barnsley and Rotherham

“Our message to local people is simple – we need them!” said Station Manager Chris Tyler, who oversees the service’s on-call fire stations.

“On-call firefighters get the same training as whole time staff, but they don’t work shifts. Instead, they carry a pager and respond from work and home when needed. This is one of the most unique jobs in the world as it requires a huge amount of commitment, bravery and determination.

“What we are asking is for people to consider making themselves available to respond to emergencies on top of their existing jobs and personal family commitments. It’s a big ask, but it’s also a huge opportunity and an exciting time to join our service. We need incredible people to fill our boots, and we know they are out there somewhere.”

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Prospective on-call firefighters are required to live or work within five minutes of their local station, so they are able to get onto a fire engine quickly if needed. Calls can come in at all times of day and night – with existing staff claiming the adrenaline rush that comes with getting a call is one of the best parts of the job.

On-call crews are used right across the country to provide fire cover to more remote areas, with firefighters getting a ‘retainer fee’ for being on standby, plus an hourly rate on top.

Last year, on-call staff were involved in battling the flurry of wildfires attended by the service during the July and August 2022 heatwaves.

Officers say that without them, the service wouldn’t be able to run.

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“We’ve long known how valuable our on-call crews are, but you only have to look at the heatwave we experienced last summer to see how important they are,” continued Mr Tyler.

“Some of our staff finished a day at work, got changed and then got on the fire engine to help deal with the unprecedented demand we faced – on the hottest day of the year. Their commitment is incredible and I’d encourage anyone who feels they would like a challenge to get on our website and give us their details. We’ll be in touch.”

The fire service added: “Our on-call staff come from all areas of the community. For example, they could be stay at home parents, in full or part-time employment, working for themselves, studying at college or university or not currently employed. They are paid for their services, receive thorough training and are taught all they need to know about emergency situations.”

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