Some Dorset Fire Stations Understaffed
8:57am 19th October 2013
Some of Dorset's fire stations are understaffed.
The service says they're struggling to keep retained fire fighters who're part time and have primary jobs elsewhere.
Dorset has around 300 retained crewmen who make up over half of the entire service.
Each crewman, men and women, have primary jobs that range from office workers and plumbers to housewives and house husbands. They respond to emergency call-outs at a moment's notice when their pagers go off with a message calling them to their local fire station.
Dorset District Commander Louis Minchella told Wessex FM retained fire fighters are vital and some of their stations are looking for new faces to help the service;
"We've had a high turnover really and some of our stations are looking to recruit more people to fill the gaps, particularly Wareham, Portland and Maiden Newton. We do need on call fire fighters across the whole county though."
"They cover all of the areas outside of the wider populated areas, so when you're out of the main urban places like Poole and Bournemouth, it's run by retained fire fighters. Not only are they fire-fighters but they have a primary job somewhere else, but when a call comes in, they drop everything and become a fire fighter."
You can find out loads more about becoming a retained fire fighter by clicking the links below, plus there's an open day at Maiden Newton Fire Station on Wednesday (23rd October) between 7pm and 8:30pm, where you can meet the staff and learn all about life with the fire service.
To become a retained fire fighter you have to meet a certain criteria though, you've got to be over 18, physically fit, live close to a local station and have an interest in the fire service;
"You need to be looking for secondary employment, and really need an interest in us and helping the local community. There are some tests which we will help you with. But as long as you're physically fit, over 18, then get involved and find out what we have to offer."