February 05, 2016 - 10:33 AM
KELOWNA - So you wanna be a firefighter? Run into burning buildings when others are running out? Rescue helpless children and cats? This could be for you.
The Kelowna Fire Department is hiring but only the serious need apply — as in, very serious.
After all, how many other jobs list the "ability to take calculated risks to help others in need" as a preferred qualification? How about “courageous and forthright and works well under pressure” or "comfortable being in confined spaces and heights."
If none of those destroy your heroic daydreams, then consider some of the more mundane minimum requirements of the job.
Besides being at least 18, you must have a Class 3 drivers license with air brake ticket, be able to swim (a deal-breaker for some), physically perform the work, hold a current first aid certificate and have a clear criminal record.
Gender doesn’t matter but you must hold firefighting certifications for current practices and hazardous materials and you must meet the minimum medical requirements, including vision and hearing (another big deal-breaker).
That might get you an interview but the eventual winner will probably have a lot more to offer (despite the dangers, these are coveted jobs).
Advanced certification for ice rescues, confined space and vehicle extraction is a bonus, as is emergency first responder training.
Construction and mechanical experience is a plus and it doesn’t hurt to have a boat license and the ability to operate heavy equipment.
Post-secondary education is preferred (but not mandatory) as is previous experience as a firefighter, either full-time or volunteer.
All this could land you a part-time job with the Kelowna Fire Department, which just signed a new labour agreement with the City of Kelowna giving them an annual 2.5 per cent salary increase through to 2019.
And if you do get hired, you will get to scream around in some shiny new trucks. The fire department took delivery of a new fire engine in early 2015 and is expecting delivery of three more engines and two bush trucks by 2017.
If that daunting job description doesn’t deter you, the City of Kelowna is taking applications until Feb. 23, beginning work this summer.
For more Kelowna Fire Department stories, click here.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016