The Deputy Chief Fire Officer of Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service, Chris Kerr, is encouraging more women to consider firefighting as a career. He said: "What we really would like is for more women in Northern Ireland to become firefighters. Being a firefighter is a remarkable, challenging and rewarding career option for both men and women." The number of female firefighters has been steadily increasing over the years in Northern Ireland and NIFRS now has 46 females of whom 25 work wholetime. All candidates who apply must have at least a C Grade at GCSE Maths and English. Once the application form has been submitted, candidates are invited to attend a multi-stage fitness test.

 The DCFO continued: "The job of a firefighter has changed dramatically over the years. Today we provide a much broader fire and rescue service to the people of Northern Ireland and respond to much more than fires. Our proactive community engagement and education work is also a big part of the job as we want to help keep people safe and prevent fires and other types of emergency incidents occurring in the first place."

 If the candidates are successful in their fitness test, they are put forward for short listing, based on their application form. If short listed they are invited to a practical test. If successful in this, the candidates will progress to the interview stage. The first course of training for the new applicants will commence on the 18 week training course in early 2012. Applications close on Thursday 11 August at 3pm. For more information visit the NIFRS website at


10:09, 21/07/11, Henry Bennett