fire service entry requirements

kieran hussey

attributes required

There are many attributes needed to become a successful fire fighter. these include confidence, resilience, adaptability, ability to communicate effectively, integrity and commitment.

Educational requirements

Although there are no set educational requirements to join the fire service they look for a GCSE or equivalent in English and maths is helpful and a science subject is use full. there are degrees that you can take to help you gain entry to the fire service such as:

  • University of Central Lancashire BSc (Hons) Fire and Leadership Studies (in partnership with the Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service);
  • University of Wolverhampton BSc (Hons) Fire and Rescue (in partnership with the West Midlands Fire and Rescue Service).

Physical requirements


you will be required to take part in physical tests which will assess your level of fitness, strength and manual ingenuity as well as your level of confidence in physical exercises.


There are six physical tests that need to be completed

1.ladder climb

This is a test of confidence while working at height. The applicant must climb a ladder correctly to 13.5m approximately second storey height and show a leg lock, then lean back and describe symbols shown on the floor.

2.casualty evacuation

this is a test of physical strength while in full protective gear. The applicant must drag a 55kg casualty round a 30 meter course while walking backwards.

3.lader lift and ladder lower simulation

again this is a test of physical strength, the applicant must raise a bar 75 cm off the ground to a height of 182cm and back down to the 75 cm. The weight of the bar at the lifting point will start at 5kg. The maximum load to be added is 15kg.

4.Enclosed space

This is a test of confidence, agility and possible claustrophobia whilst working in an enclosed space. applicants will be infull protective gearand wearing a Breathing Apparatus facemask the applicant will be required to negotiate a crawl way ina set time Half the route will be with clear vision and the other half with obscured vision.applicants will need to preform tasks during this test.

5.equiptment assembly

This is a test of manual dexterity. applicants must assemble and disassemble an item of equipment and follow the diagrams provided.

6.equiptment carry

This is a test of fitness, muscular strength and stamina applicants must:

  • Drag a hose reel from an appliance for 25 metres, then jog back 25 metres.
  • Pick up and carry 2 coiled 70 mm hoses for 100 metres.
  • Carry 1 coiled 70 mm hose at chest height for 25 metres, and then jog back 75 metres.
  • Pick up and carry a 2.4 metre suction hose and basket strainer for 100 metres, then jog back 100 metres.
  • Pick up and carry a simulated ‘Light Portable Pump’ for 100 metres (weighing approximately 30kgs).

  • medical tests

  • Hearing Test – you will sit in a sound proof booth wearing headphones and will be asked to press a button when you hear a range of sounds.
  • Step Test – you will be asked to step up and down on a box whilst your heart rate is monitored and the rate of step is gradually increased.
  • Lung Function – you will be asked to blow hard and long down a hollow tube until all your lung capacity is fully exhaled – a reading is taken and assessed accordingly.
  • Physical Stamina – you will be asked to squat on a machine designed to test your back and thigh strength and then pull a specified measurement.
  • General Tests – you will finally see the doctor who will test your reflexes and discuss your medical questionnaire with you.
  • Chest X-Ray – you will be sent to the local hospital for a chest x-ray.
  • application and selection processes

    The Self Selection Questionnaire


    This questionnaire is designed for individuals to complete prior to filling in the application form. It will help applicants to decide whether they have what it takes to be a firefighter. It will show applicants what it means to be a firefighter. It will show what firefighters are needed to do. It will give applicants a chance to see if what they thought matches what actually is involved in being a firefighter. It will give applicants an idea of whether being a firefighter is right for them.

    Application form

    The information provided on your application form is the only information used in deciding whether or not applicants are to proceed to the next stage of the recruitment process. the application form will be a PQA form witch means personal quality's and attributes applicants must show the skills and quality's needed to become a fire-fighter

    Curriculum Vitaes

    CVs are not needed. If a CV is received from an applicant then it will not be looked at during the process. applicants are required to complete the Fire & Rescue Service Application Form.

    As part of an application package, candidates will receive a great deal of information. applicants must read all the information thoroughly. This information tells applicants what is looked for and should help applicants sell themselves.



    written tests

    These tests consist of a series of multiple choice questions designed to assess applicants ability and suitability for becoming a firefighter. They are split in to two categories:


    1. National Firefighter Ability Tests

    This consists of three tests that must be completed in a set time:

    • Working with numbers

    • Understanding information

    • Situational Awareness & Problem Solving

    2. National Firefighter Questionnaire

    This has been designed to provide information on personal style and behaviour. The information given will be considered alongside other parts of the selection process to decide if you are suited to becoming a firefighter.

    physical tests

    As part of the selection process, candidates are required to undertake physical tests, which aim to assess candidates fitness level , strength and problem solving ability as well as candidates level of confidence in simulated exercises. These tests are designed to reflect operational practice and may change from time to time.

    Candidates will be asked to complete a Medical Screening Form prior to undertaking any of these tests, this is to ensure that individuals are fit enough to undertake them.

    There are six tests that make up the National Firefighter Physical Tests. These are:

    1. Enclosed Space

    2. Ladder Climb

    3. Casualty Evacuation

    4. Ladder Lift

    5. Equipment Assembly

    6. Equipment Carry