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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 1998

    Question Engineer Incentives

    My department has had difficulty recruiting firefighters to take the engineers promotional exam. In particular, there is a lack of interest from senior firefighters and paramedic firefighters. Both of these classes make nearly as much as(and in some cases more than) an engineer thus, until a recent pay increase, there was no financial incentive to become an engineer. A recent pay increase improved the showing but not significantly.

    What ideas does your paid or volunteer department have toward enticing firefighters to become engineers? What has worked for you and what hasn't?

    Some ideas we are kicking around include a 1/2 point bonus on the captain's test or requiring personnel to have to have been on an engineer's list to qualify for the captain's test (once done but abandoned).

    [ 01-16-2002: Message edited by: phxfyr ]

    [ 01-16-2002: Message edited by: phxfyr ]</p>

  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2001


    My department now uses full time engine and truck operators. Until last year everyone rotated positions each shift. For example, 1 day you would drive the engine. The next shift you might drive the ambo. The shift after that you would ride the FF position on the engine or tower. Not in any particular order. If your ambo was BLS you would drive or ride Aid. Now that all of our ambulances are ALS a FF/EMT will drive and the Paramedic(also a FF) will ride shotgun. A few years ago our union got us a $500 yr. pay premium if you had a CDL. At the time this was everyone below the rank of Captain, it was required. But even some Captains and Battalion Chiefs had CDL's Last summer we changed things. Now each engine and tower on each shift(A,B,C) has a designated driver. The position now gets a $1,000 yr. pay premium for 33 spots. Even Paramedics could choose to become drivers, still keep their Paramedic pay premium, and get the driver premium. Some scam huh? There was a competitive exam for the position. Written, practical, and you received points for seniority. You still have to have a CDL and there are back up drivers.
    If I'm off a FF or Paramedic in my company will fill in. Overall I think it's great how it's set up now. Plus, it keeps me off the ambo

  3. #3
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Sep 1999
    Rolla Missouri


    Here is a good one, only our enginers are able to test for captin positions, and you have to be a driver for 5 years.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2001


    You have to get your union contract changed.For us,EO(equipment operator)is a promotion(it takes 5 years to take the test).In order to make Lieutenant,you have to be a driver first.Our pay scale also reflects this.An EO makes $15.00 less then a Lt.,because our EO's have to keep their Paramedic licence,which pays alittle more then Firefighter grade.Our EO's also are Acting Officers/Relief Officers,so the promotion to EO gives you the opportunities to gain experience for the next level,and move-up pay of Lt.In other words,being promoted to EO has many incentives,without it you don't make officer and your salary is closer to Lt.then it is to a FFR/Paramedic.

    I might add,our promotional test to EO is somewhat difficult because it covers not only pump/aerial stuff but company officer material too.So you're essentially taking 2 tests within the one.

  5. #5
    Member MikeE-631's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    South Carolina


    In our dept. it is a step on the career ladder as important as all the other ones. You go through 1 year of probation, 1 year as FF 1, at least 2 years FF 2, then you are eligible for engineers testing. You need to be engineer for 2 years before being eligible to test for Lieutenant. Every promotion brings a 5% pay increase.
    Of course there are always FF's who rather stay FF's for various reasons. Everyone has his own priorities and they should be honored. But for those who want to climb the career ladder, engineer is a highly desired step among FF's.



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