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On-Call Firefighter

What is an On-Call Firefighter

On-Call crews will be called upon to attend the full range of incidents including fires, floods, road traffic collisions, chemical spills and more, and work alongside their Full-Time colleagues at many incidents.

Most On-Call Firefighters are based in rural areas and will crew a designated fire engine at an On-Call fire station. However, some are based in urban areas on stations alongside Full-Time crews (Full-Time Firefighters).

Our On-Call Fire Stations

There are 22 strategically placed On-Call Fire Stations across Humberside Fire and Rescue Service area.  These include 19 stand-alone On-Call stations and 3 combined Full-Time/On-Call stations. 

Some of these On-Call Stations also have specialist appliances such as High Volume Pumps, Water Support Units, Command Units and Aerial Ladder Platforms.

map of Humberside with locations of all our fire stations

East Riding of Yorkshire 








Market Weighton






North East Lincolnshire



North Lincolnshire





Kirton in Lindsey



Providing availability

You need to live or work within five minutes (driving at normal road speed) of an On-Call fire station. You have to be flexible in your work because no-one can predict when you’ll be called out, each firefighter carries an ‘alerter’ so that they can respond when required.

There is a basic salary based on the specified hours declared in a Firefighters Availability Profile and an additional payment for responding and attending incidents.

Shift system

Most of our On-Call firefighters have full-time occupations outside of the Fire and Rescue Service, some of those have an agreement with their employers they can be released from their normal occupation to attend incidents as and when required. However, others manage their availability around their full time employment.

As such they have agreed to commit themselves when required, this commitment includes:

  • A requirement to attend a weekly development session
  • A requirement to attend training courses as and when necessary
  • A commitment to respond to emergency calls

What sort of commitment we will need from you?

You will need to be committed to responding when you are needed.

For much of the time, an On-Call fire station does not have a crew in it.

As an On-Call firefighter you will be alerted when you are needed and have 5 minutes (driving at normal road speed) to report to your On Call Fire Station and, with your crew, mobilise the necessary fire engine(s).

Our On-Call firefighters usually have other occupations, but when the call comes they drop whatever they are doing and become part of our team.

Depending on the type of cover given, as an On-Call firefighter you could respond from home and/or a place of work, day and/or night.

You will receive a retaining fee relevant to the amount of hours availability you can provide. You will receive a disturbance fee and additional hourly rate payments when responding to an emergency.

You will need to be committed to train and gain the skills needed for the role.

On-Call firefighters are required to fulfil training for their role and must attend regular training activities, in addition to some and other pre-planned centrally based training sessions provided by our Training Department.

You will also have opportunities to carry out additional duties such as, community fire safety sessions, equipment maintenance and testing and general station routines. These duties are in addition to responding to emergencies such as:

  • Animal rescues
  • Road traffic collisions
  • Property fires
  • Industrial fires
  • Fires in the open
  • Water rescues
  • Humanitarian assistance
  • Medical assistance
  • and many, many more…

You will obtain knowledge and learn new skills along the way such as first aid, road traffic collision procedure and fire safety.  As well as having the opportunity to learn other skills, such as driving a large goods vehicle.

Our Principles and Behaviours

We pride ourselves in our Principles and Behaviours, our values, which are:

Leadership - we lead by example and respect the views of others

Passion - we are proud and enthusiastic

Innovation - we encourage creativity and are adaptable 

Dependability - we will always deliver 

Online tests

Ability tests

The three ability tests: Verbal Reasoning (20 questions), Numerical Reasoning (18 questions) and Mechanical Reasoning (20 questions). Each test has a time limit and questions are randomised. All questions are relevant to the Fire Service.

Example tests are available below, please note the links below open up a new web page.

Verbal Reasoning

Numerical Reasoning

Mechanical Reasoning

These test your English and Math skills, if you wish to improve these ahead of the online process there are various courses within the Humberside area, click here to find out more. 

Reasonable adjustments

Before the Ability Tests are undertaken, candidates are asked whether they have dyslexia. If so, please contact our Recruitment Team by email with evidence of your diagnosis. Once confirmed, candidates will be allocated extra time (normally 25%) to complete the three timed tests.

If there are other reasonable adjustments in relation to disability, individuals are asked to email the recruitment email address with their enquiry providing as much detail as possible.

Any questions or problems you may encounter should be directed in email to the On-Call Support Team:

Verification Test

You will be asked to log in to the on-line account that you set up for your initial application and ability tests and complete a verification test.

This will be in a controlled classroom environment at Service Headquarters on the day of the practical assessments.

Practical selection tests 

Take a look at the videos below to find out more about the pratical selection tests.

Take a look at our firefighter fitness 12 Week Fitness Programme to help prepare you for the practical selection test.


Your training to become a fully qualified competent Firefighter will take a period of time, with each step building on the last. The following provides an overview of what to expect.

IOSH (Health and Safety training)

Time: 1 Day

You will undertake an IOSH Working Safely course and learn the foundations for good working practices in the work place to ensure yourself and others are kept safe.

Phase A - Pumps and Ladders

Time: 10 Days

You will learn the basics in fire ground safety, using and storing our ladders, using and storing hoses and water delivery.  Which will also include learning about fire service hydraulics and how to operate fire service pumps in a range of scenarios and environments.  How to work safely at height, how to operate height safety equipment and perform rescues from height safel

Phase B – Breathing Apparatus and Compartment Fire Behaviour Training

Time: 12 Days

You will learn about fire behaviour, operating and wearing breathing apparatus, extinguishing fires and carrying out rescues from these types of incidents. 

Phase C – Immediate Emergency Care

Time: 5 Days

You will learn the most advanced, up to date trauma skills currently available to non-health care professionals in the UK and be taught how to identify and treat life-threatening emergencies and prepare casualties for rapid evacuation to hospital.

Phase D – Road Traffic Collisions

Time: 5 Days

You learn how to safely resolve these types of incidents and operate technical rescue equipment.

Phase E – Water

Time: 2 Days

You will gain the knowledge and skills required to carry out rescues in a swift water and flood water environment.


Time: 1 Day

You will gain an understanding of what hazardous substances are and the risks associated with them at an incident.

Here's a list of On-Call Recruit Training Courses for 2020, which shows the days and commitment required to complete training. 

Trainee Firefighter Development Programme

Time: 33 Months

With all initial training modules complete, you will be able to perform all the core firefighting tasks at an emergency.

At this stage you begin the 33 month Trainee Firefighter Development Programme to become a competent Firefighter.

Within this period, you will be trained and validated using the Skills For Justice Fire Functions and National Occupational Standards including:

  • Informing and educating your community to improve awareness of fire and rescue safety matters
  • Respond to operational incidents requiring breathing apparatus
  • Taking responsibility for effective performance in fire and rescue
  • Extricate casualties from situations of entrapment
  • Save and preserve endangered life
  • Operate fire service water pumps
  • Resolve fire and rescue operational incidents
  • Provide a first response to water based incidents
  • Working at height in fire service
  • Protect the environment from the effects of hazardous materials
  • Support the effectiveness of operational response
  • Support the development of colleagues in fire and rescue
  • Contribute to fire safety solutions to minimise risks to your community
  • Drive fire and rescue service vehicles

Fully qualified competent firefighter

Your competency in role will be demonstrated through assignments, assessments and the completion of a firefighter development portfolio.

Further training in specific areas and skills will be acquired throughout your firefighting career and your competency maintained through continuous training.

On-Call payment system

Our On-Call firefighters receive a variety of payments for providing cover, training and responding to emergencies.

Retaining fee
A retaining fee is paid for the hours of cover that you provide as an On-Call firefighter and will vary depending on the amount of cover agreed.  This is only paid once recruit training is complete and you enter Firefighter development.

For example:

RoleRetaining Fee Range
FirefighterRange dependant upon the hours of availability provided






Disturbance fee
This is a set amount that is paid each time you respond to an emergency as an On-Call firefighter.

Hourly rate
Once alerted, you will be paid at a set hourly rate for the duration of the emergency call. You will also be paid at this rate for any training or additional work that you do for the Service.

RoleHourly RateDisturbance Fee
Trainee (for course attendance and development sessions only)£10.57Not applicable as a Trainee
Development£11.11£4.10 per call
Competent£14.22£4.10 per call 







As a newly recruited On-Call firefighter you will start on the trainee hourly rate of pay, and stay on it until you have completed all the acquisition training modules.

You will then progress to the development hourly rate of pay until your portfolio is completed, usually after 33 months.

At this point you will graduate to the competent hourly rate of pay.

Employee benefits


As one of our On-Call firefighters you will be eligible for membership to the 2015 Firefighters’ Pension Scheme. The 2015 Scheme is a Career Average Revalued Earnings (“CARE”) pension scheme, which came into effect on 1 April 2015. It is open to firefighters who took up employment on or after 1 April 2015, and whose role includes:

  • resolving operational incidents; or
  • leading and supporting others in the resolution of such incidents; and
  • firefighters who are transition members.

To find out how the changes affect you, please click here.

Find out if you are close to an On-Call Fire Station here.

Apply now

If you have any further questions, please call the team on 01482 567540 or email

Your Details

Please enter your National Insurance Number (NI Number) above. This should consist of nine characters: two letters followed by six digits and then a letter, e.g. AB 12 34 56 C. Note that this number will be checked at a later stage in the process to verify your identity.


To ensure we have enough approximately sized boots for applicants to wear at the Firefighter selection tests, please state your nearest shoe size (UK sizing).


When traveling at normal road speeds and adhering to rule imposed under the Road Traffic Act and other legislation, how long wold it take in minutes for you to travel to the Fire Station from home.

When traveling at normal road speeds and adhering to rule imposed under the Road Traffic Act and other legislation, how long wold it take in minutes for you to travel to the Fire Station from work.


Current Employer


Previous Employers



Contact details for references

Please provide the names and contact details of two referees (one of whom should be your present or most recent employer). If you are unable to provide details of referees, please contact the On-Call Support on 01482 567540.



Driving Time Regulations

( tick all that apply)

The type of vehicle I drive is:


I have read and fully understand the duty on me to comply at all times with the relevant legislation on drivers’ hours and rest breaks. I confirm that the above details are correct at the time of completion and if I am successful in this application any changes in my employment that involves driving encompassed by these or future Regulations will be immediately notified to the On-Call Hub and my Watch Manager. If I am successful in this application I understand that any changes in my employment or duties undertaken in relation to driving (including being a mobile worker) will need to be considered by Humberside Fire and Rescue Service in relation to my contract of employment. In agreeing below I confirm my understanding that Humberside Fire and Rescue Service reserve the right to contact my main employer to discuss my employment in relation to relevant Regulations.

Declaration of Offences

You are required to declare any previous convictions for offences under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. Include offences dealt with by a court of law, HM Services disciplinary procedures and any driving offences. Please note that we will apply for an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service check as part of your application.


Equality Act 2010

Where required or identified, we will consider what reasonable adjustments could be made to enable you to proceed with your application, provided any such adjustments do not contravene Health and Safety Legislation.


Equal Opportunities

The Fire and Rescue Services recognise the value of having a diverse workforce. In order to ensure that our recruitment advertisements attract people from all groups within the community, we would be grateful if you would answer the following questions. This information is confidential and will be used solely for monitoring purposes.

Our Commitment to you: We understand that in some cases additional support may be needed to enable a candidate to participate fully in the Selection Process (e.g. Dyslexia). Please record any support requirements that you may have in the space below. This information enables us to ensure that the necessary arrangements are made on your behalf. This detail is kept confidential and has no bearing on a selection decision.

Working Time Directive Opt-out Form

Holiday Pay Calculation - to Opt-out of the Working Time Regulations

Waiver to opt-out of the Working Time Regulations Holiday Pay calculation based on my average earnings over the 12 weeks immediately before the start of requested leave taken.

I hereby confirm that I am content for my Holiday Pay to be calculated in line with the National Joint Council’s recommendation that my average earnings be calculated annually in December based upon the previous 12 months and that the resulting figure be used for any annual leave I take in the following year.

I also understand that I can terminate the agreement after giving 30 days' notice of my intention to do so.

Data Protection

I agree to the information in this form being stored for the purposes of my application, for monitoring and for reasonable research into the application process, in accordance with the Data Protection Act.

I confirm that I have completed this application form and that to the best of my knowledge the information I have provided in it is true, accurate and correct.

Our Principals and Behaviours

  • Leadership – we lead by example and respect the views of others
  • Passion – we are proud and enthusiastic
  • Dependability – we will always deliver
  • Innovation – we encourage creativity and are adaptable


We encourage honesty and openness and take pride in our fair and consistent approach. We lead by example and are inspirational in our field.


  • I treat all with respect and motivate others
  • I lead by example knowledgeably and decisively
  • I am approachable, open and listen to others
  • I am honest, fair and consistent


We are proud to represent an organisation which is committed to serving our communities with enthusiasm. Our self-motivation drives our success.


  • I am committed to promoting a positive image of myself and the organisation
  • I believe in the work I do and I care about the service I provide
  • I am motivated and dedicated to achieve what is expected of me
  • I enjoy working as part of a team and understand the value of being a team player


We are reliable and consistent in our approach. Our communities, partners and colleagues trust us to deliver.


  • I consistently strive to deliver the best results
  • I support the team to achieve its collective goals
  • I am approachable, flexible and responsible for my actions
  • I maintain my competence and aim to be the best that I can be


We encourage creativity and are adaptable to the change this brings. We are forward thinking and progressive in our approach to new ideas.


  • I am progressive and seek to make improvements
  • I am forward thinking and embrace new ideas


I have read and understood the Principles and Behaviours of Humberside Fire and Rescue Service and will commit to practice and actively promote them.

NB. Your details will be kept confidential and will never be passed on to any third parties.