One of the most important emergency services operating in the United Kingdom is the Fire Service. Called upon 24 hours a day 365 days a year the fire service answers thousands of emergency calls ranging from serious industrial accidents to car accidents to house fires.
However just like each of the other emergency services operating in the United Kingdom today there is a shortage of staff which can have a knock on effect if the number of emergencies rises unexpectedly which sometimes happens.
When this happens the fire service calls upon their auxiliary staff who are on-call 24 hours a day and who often hold down full time jobs of their own or indeed are self employed business people.
Indeed sometimes as with the coast guard, the fire service calls upon its volunteers to help deal with emergencies in remote areas of the country where having a 24 hour manned fire station is not always practical.
How To Become a Volunteer with the Fire Service
If you are interested in becoming a volunteer fire fighter then you must be physically fit. This is very important and something which is thoroughly investigated before any offer of a position is made. Also you must be some – if not all – of the following:
Live within 5 minutes of the fire station
Be over 18 years old
Be honest and trustworthy
Have good eye sight and hearing
be able to attend residential courses as and when required
Be committed to providing your local community with a high standard of volunteer service
Of course these volunteer positions are not just open to men and indeed many women have taken the reins as volunteers also.
What The Role Contains
As a volunteer fire fighter the main focus of your role will be to provide additional support for the full time fire fighters who are trained to fight both exterior and interior fires.
Also you will be charged with the task of helping the injured and wounded to safety as well as keeping the general public out of harm’s way. One of the most common areas of a volunteer fire fighter’s remit is crowd control. Human nature dictates that many of us would stop and stare if we saw a fire blazing so keeping the public back is a necessary and important function for any volunteer to perform.
Applying to Become a Volunteer Fire Fighter
Your first course of action should be to contact your local fire station. The Chief Officer will be able to discuss with you informally the nature of how to apply and what exactly the fire service is looking for from its volunteers.
Also if you have access to the Internet look up your local fire service recruitment department and contact them with reference to receiving an application pack. Some fire services allow you to download this from their website as a PDF document.
You should also be aware that literacy and numeracy are pre-requisites for these volunteer’s positions and your local fire service recruitment officer can tell you what are the best qualifications to have and how to achieve them if you currently do not possess them.
I own a landscaping and lawn care business in Glasgow , and would love to become a volunteer fireman in my local area.
James - 30-Jan-17 @ 12:28 PM
Hi, I have experience about 10 years in Iranian Gas Company(Hashemi nezhad Gas Refinery) as a fire fighter and fire officer.I'd like to be a valunteer fire fighter inLondon.Please let me know, How can I do it?!!
Thank you for your time.
Vici - 24-Jan-17 @ 4:31 PM
I am 14 and have wanted to work at the fire service what grades would I need
Anna - 29-Nov-16 @ 12:19 PM
I would like to apply as for a form for the fire service over the festive period . I'm an unemployed electrical tech. I've also been in property that have had fire damage. Ewin Williamson should never have died in those circumstances. I am an ex employee of the offshore oil & Gas industry. My ph. Is . 07731378652 . My current address is 26/1 Moat street , Edinburgh , EH14 1PJ , thankyou . David Ramsay
Spike - 24-Nov-16 @ 10:59 PM
I think there may be some confusion here.The article is referring to on-call firefighters (often called retained firefighters).They are not strictly volunteers - they get paid for their time and have to undergo rigorous training.They often tend to have other jobs and are 'on-call' in case they are needed.On the other hand, volunteers with the fire service tend to undertake preventative activities, talking to the public about fire and road safety.Hope this helps!
Claire - 31-Aug-16 @ 2:47 PM
Hi what hours would I be doing if this thanks Matt
Matt - 10-Nov-15 @ 8:41 PM
Mmy narest station is on the Fitzwilliam road in Rotherham, as I don't drive I was wondering what voluntary jobs can I do within the station?
Jambo - 20-Aug-15 @ 9:25 PM
@Juy. Ask at your local fire service (the non-emergency number will be found if you search for fire service and then your location).
VoluntaryWorker - 30-Jun-15 @ 11:12 AM
@RFSProby. This should help in your application to become a firefighter volunteer here the UK.
VoluntaryWorker - 29-Jun-15 @ 2:18 PM
I am a qualified operational firefighter who worked for 22 months in Singapore as a 1LT. I'm currently a student in the UK, and I wish to give back to the community by volunteering with the fire brigade. I am unfortunately only free on the weekends since I have lectures and supervisions on the weekdays. What should I do?
Juy - 26-Jun-15 @ 4:39 PM
With me soon immigrating to Manchester from Australia, I'm wondering if if it's enough me having been a probationary trainee in the Rural Fire Service of Australia (volunteer).
RFSProby - 23-Jun-15 @ 10:42 AM
@yoonus. Hope the information in the article helped. Good luck!
VoluntaryWorker - 5-Jun-15 @ 11:11 AM
How hard is it to try and even apply for the fireservice????
Id love to volunteer
Yoonus - 2-Jun-15 @ 7:21 PM
@Nicole Russell. Sounds like you are well suited to a role within the fire service, good luck!
VoluntaryWorker - 19-Dec-14 @ 10:34 AM
I am strong, reliable and hard working as a person and I am always generally concerned for the well being and safety of others. I am quick and efficient. I look after myself well and like to keep fit and healthy.
The chance to progress in a career with the fire department would mean a lot to myself and to help in the community is my goal, especially with the mentoring skills and interest i have. A role to work alongside and assist the fire fighters in the best way i can is the kind of hands on work I work well at.
I am gaining qualifications to match my life experience and reach my full potential to help make a difference under high pressure situations.
I enjoy helping people and learning new things.
Nicole Russell - 18-Dec-14 @ 2:05 PM
The information above is incorrect, mostly the statement that volunteer firefighters don't fight fires inside buildings. That is untrue.
Johnny - 5-Jun-14 @ 9:46 AM
Could you please advise which fire services are offering volunteer firefighter positions?
LAJ - 15-Apr-14 @ 2:38 PM
With the hot weather approaching and the dangers of fires I would like to offer my services as a volunteer and have always adhered to all Workplace Health & Safety protocols and proceedurers. I have a HR licence and have driven and operated various machinery keeping close vigilence at all times. Glenn.
wriggles - 11-Sep-13 @ 6:05 AM
Many moons past I as a once member of the Auxiliary Fire Service which was the National Fire service during the war, so I do have some knowledge of the Job.
Don’t be mistaken that it’s an easy form of work because they have to lay in wait for an incident to happen.
When it does all hell brakes out then it can be like attending a war zone you just don’t know what to expect when you arrive on site there are many hazards in the smallest of fires.
Apart from that the hose pipe is quit a difficult piece of equipment to handle and very ruff on soft hands there are times when a fire is not under control and theirs a shortage of water then its different ball game, then it becomes a relay race getting water to the fire. Sometimes water is taken from lakes or rivers that just a small bit if it. Sounds fun after three to four hours and you will be done in.
jcb - 31-Aug-13 @ 7:49 PM
It absolutely beggars belief that the Fire Service is asking for volunteers.The job of a fireman/woman is a job that needs extensive training and commitment,andnot a job to play at.
There isnt by chance a legal ballot taking place among existing real firemen/women is there?and you have plans to try and break a potential legal strike?Surely not.
Koskid - 2-Aug-13 @ 10:59 PM
hi i am 48single i would like to volunteering with you as soon as possible
kathy - 26-Jun-13 @ 7:10 AM
Hi Guys, I am interested in doing volunteer work for the fire services on Bribie Island and welcome you information, kind regards Glenn.
wriggles - 25-Jun-13 @ 11:50 PM
Hi im 16yrs and have always wanted to be a fire fighter
i have just done a weeks training with diversifire and am even
more determined to become part of the fire brigade and am
hoping to start a college course to help me get there from august
i was wondering if there's any way i could help out at my local fire
station to gain knowledgeand experience.?
skinny - 21-Jun-13 @ 8:41 PM
I love to keep busy also and to gain a chance to work with experiencing team working together for a safer London,I believe that this role is Relevant to all and is rewarding.
kole - 14-Jun-13 @ 12:54 PM
despite budget cuts the public needs protection from fire
crazy ivan - 21-Sep-12 @ 10:42 PM
i always wanted to join the fire service am 25 years old do they have an application form online.how to join ?
hichamo - 11-Jul-12 @ 7:14 PM
i always wanted to join the fire service am 20 years old do they have an application form online
shabba - 9-Jan-12 @ 1:03 PM
Hey, I joined the fire cadets when I was 14 meant i got to see all the ins and outs of the fire department. Ladder drills, breathing aparaters, putting out of controlled fires, searching smoked buildings as well as searching for missing people etc pretty much everything except real uncontrolled fires
unfortunately this was only available for 14-16 year olds in my area however it may be an idea to look into your local station and see if they have anything similar to offer
Brooke - 27-Dec-11 @ 3:33 AM
I want to join the fire services as soon as possible because I enjoy the hands on approach and having physical as well as mental challenges. I want to know the best way to be prepared for training for this specific job as well as how to get involved with becoming a volunteer fireman. I am only 16 turning 17 in January, but I also want to know if it’s possible if I can enrol in the training sessions because then I know what to be prepared for?
Wardy - 9-Dec-11 @ 11:54 AM
I am currently 17, however I've got a keen interest in volunteering within the fire services. I would much prefer a hands on job opposed to a desk job. However, to my understanding, you have to be 18 to enrol in the fire services altogether. Is it possible to apply early with a minimum starting date and, if possible, to undergo some previous training in preparation to the physical tests so that i would be able to hit the ground running?