Recruitment FAQ

How do I contact to become a volunteer firefighter or operation support crew?

Contact our station either on email: phelan.pirrie@fireandemergency.nz  or phone 021844124


Will I have to work shifts?

No, at our brigade volunteers are given a pager and a phone app, if this goes off, and you are in the area and available you can respond, if you're at work, out of the area or unavailable, you aren't expected to respond.


I work in town or out of Muriwai during the day, is this a problem?

No, most of our members work out of Muriwai, you're only expected to respond if you are in Muriwai and available to respond to a call out.


Do I need to live close to the station to join?

Yes, we require potential recruits to live either on Motutara, Waitea, Edwin Mitchelson, Berridge or Ngatira Roads or Domain Cres. This is because we need to get the appliance out the door quickly and so you need to be within 3 minutes of the station. 


What are the training requirements?

Recruit firefighters are required to attend a 7-day recruit course or the equivalent 3-day basic skills, 1-day first aid, 2-day breathing apparatus, and 1-day Realistic Fire Training Building. Some pre-course learning is required, but station help is available. Attendance at brigade weekly training nights is required. 

We provide a supportive environment to ensure our recruits succeed in their training, before you complete your 'Basic Training Course' (which is currently done at the New Zealand Fire Service training centre in Mt Wellington) we will work with you to ensure you have met a minimum standard of competency. 

Recruit Fire Fighters find the basic training and BA course a very rewarding experience, the training you will undergo is nothing like anything else you will experience. It helps build a bond with your fellow Fire Fighters and your confidence in abilities you probably didn't know you have.


What level of fitness is required?

Firefighters often have to work at heights, climb, crawl (often in confined spaces) lift (often above shoulder height) and push or pull heavy loads, use manual and or power tools and may have to maintain a heavy workload over a period of time whilst working in suboptimal environmental conditions in which they depend on all five senses. You will need a reasonable level of fitness, good vision, hearing, and balance to cope with extreme environmental conditions.



Can women become fire-fighters?

Absolutely.


Do I need Security Clearance?

Applicants are required to undergo a full police check. A number of people have minor drugs/driving/assault convictions that may preclude them from becoming a member. A guide for suitability is available from your local Chief Fire Officer. 


Do I need Medical Clearance?

You will be required to complete a Medical Questionnaire and visit a GP for confirmation of your medical status. FENZ pays the cost of obtaining a medical assessment.


I have Asthma, will that stop me becoming a Fire Fighter?

The nature of fire fighting means firefighters are exposed to a huge variety of air-born substances seen and unseen, which may trigger asthma in individuals with over-sensitive airways and sometimes in people who have never had asthma before.

Most asthmatics know how to manage, control and treat their normal asthma symptoms in everyday circumstances using an inhaler for an attack. However, a firefighter can't use their inhaler if they have an attack in the middle of a fire and they are wearing breathing apparatus. Becoming an Operational Support crew member is still an option.


If I wear glasses can I become a volunteer firefighter? 

Corrective lenses to achieve visual requirements may be worn provided they cannot be dislodged during the type of strenuous activity performed by fire-fighters. Contact lenses may be worn.


Breathing Apparatus (BA) & beards or facial hair.

Firefighters are expected to be able to wear BA. For the mask to successfully provide a seal around the face there must be no facial hair around the periphery of the face, and glasses cannot be worn. This means crew cannot have beards or stubble at any time. Those with sight difficulties will be required to wear contact lenses.


Uniform and protective clothing.

A temporary uniform is provided until your probational period is completed. Once you have completed police and medical checks and accepted as a recruit you will be issued with protective clothing and uniform.


I don't think I have the fitness to be a firefighter, or can't commit to the training required, can I still help?

Yes, we do have Operational Support crew, they assist us at incidents performing a range of duties. There is still some training required but not to the same level as for a firefighter. Contact us for more information.


What roles are there within a volunteer brigade?

A large number of people within a brigade are required to be fully operational fire-fighters. However, not all brigade roles require operational readiness. Support personnel are an integral part of the brigades they are members of, such roles include volunteer operational support and/or volunteer brigade non-operational and administrative support. For information regarding these roles speak with your local Chief Fire Officer.