Being a Wholetime Firefighter
As a Wholetime Firefighter, you will work full-time at one of our Fire Stations throughout Northern Ireland. It is an exciting and rewarding career, but it is very challenging.
You will deal with a full range of incidents including fires, floods, road traffic collisions, chemical spills and specialist rescues. You will also be involved in community education and fire prevention activities.
“Firefighting is both a vocation and a way of life. Our Firefighters have chosen this career because they believe in serving our community and working with others to make Northern Ireland a safer place. These are the fundamental cornerstones upon which our service is built.”
Chief Fire & Rescue Officer
You will complete an initial 16 week training programme before being posted to a Station for operational duty. You will continue training on Station, and complete specialist courses at our Learning & Development Centre.
You will continue to develop and maintain the skills required for the job by attending training sessions. You will also complete a development programme to demonstrate your competence in the role.
Could you be our future Chief?
While you’ll begin as a Firefighter, there are plenty of opportunities for career development including promotion. You’ll also have the opportunity to diversify your role, in areas such as Specialist Rescue, Fire Safety and even teaching.
Pay & Pension
Here’s what you could be earning while we continually contribute to your pension throughout your career.
|Role||Salary per annum*|
|Trainee Firefighter – Competent Firefighter||£24,000 – £32,000|
|Watch Commander||£37,000 – £40,000|
|Station Commander||£40,000 – £50,000|
* All salaries provided are an approximation, pay and progression is in line with national pay awards.
Firefighters have to work shifts, public holidays and could be stationed anywhere in Northern Ireland. You will work on 1 of our 3 Duty Systems in operation.
|Day Crewing||Monday to Friday, 8.00am to 6.00pm, with days off in lieu.|
|Variable Crewing||Consists of 7 shifts in a 2 week cycle form 7.30am to 7.30pm.|
|2-2-4 Crewing||Consists of 2 day shifts from 8.00am to 6.00pm, 2 night shifts from 6.00pm to 8.00am, followed by 4 days off.|
Here’s what our people have to say
Station Commander John O’Prey
“I am currently on a Temporary Promotion as Flexi Station Commander in Cookstown District.
I feel so privileged to have a job that I love doing. I have the opportunity to be in contact and work with such a variety of people. From the Wholetime and On-Call crews who roll out the doors on the Fire Appliances to the fantastic people who make up the support structure that keeps our service moving forward. I admire the enthusiasm that everyone puts into ensuring challenges have a minimum impact to our front line emergency service. We really are one big team.
The most rewarding thing about working in NIFRS is opportunity to learn and develop in both my working life and also my personal life. I was a Firefighter in Central, part of the Specialist Rescue Team, General Instructor in Learning & Development Centre and Temporary spell in the Research and Development. I have loved every role and I use each as a learning and development opportunity. I ‘buzz of’ the opportunity that I get to test and challenge myself every day. We are part of a great big Fire Service and I would recommend everyone join, try different roles and meet as many of the fantastic people who keep our service running 24/7 365 days per year.”
“I feel so privileged to have a job that I love doing. We really are one big team.
I get to test and challenge myself every day. We are part of a great big Fire Service and I would recommend everyone join and try different roles.”
Crew Commander Barrie Kelly
“I firmly believe we can get the best from our people if we support and encourage them, as well as pushing them to succeed.”
Instructor, Learning & Development Centre
“I was previously a Firefighter in Antrim and Lurgan, now I am an Instructor in the Learning & Development Centre.
I chose this role because I have a genuine passion for motivating others to learn and develop. I have a background in coaching both soccer and Gaelic football and feel a lot of these skills have been easily transferable. I firmly believe we can get the best from our people if we support and encourage them in their journey, as well as pushing them to succeed when required.
There is no better feeling than a student, a trainee or experienced firefighter, expressing their gratitude for a particular approach I took to teaching. The Learning & Development Centre team has some incredibly passionate and supportive mentors at the minute. I would encourage others with a similar passion to consider becoming an instructor.”