Fresno Fire Department planning to hire 45 employees

The hiring is contingent on two things - budget approval by the Mayor and City Council and the federal SAFER grant.
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- For the first time in almost four years, Fresno Fire is looking for new recruits with and without experience.

Chief Kerri Donis says, "We can teach you to be a firefighter, we can't teach you to come with a good attitude and strong work ethic. You have to come to us with those things."

The plan is to hire 42 new firefighters and three staff positions.

The first academy class will help implement a new two-person squad that will primarily run medical emergencies. This will keep engines and trucks parked longer and better prepared for fires.

The next would add a fourth firefighter to engines and trucks - someone who would help relieve taxed resources as fire crews have already seen an almost 50% increase in fire calls alone compared to last year.

"Once this hiring is complete which will take about 14 months or so we will have 95 on duty each day," Donis said.

The additions are contingent on two things - budget approval by the Mayor and City Council and the federal SAFER grant.

The window to apply for the SAFER grant doesn't start til the start of next year.

But Chief Donis says they're ready, adding, "We are super excited about the opportunity not only for the department but we may find some talent locally that maybe never even thought about it before."

She adds that the general public considering this as a profession should get their EMT certification and visit the Fresno Fire website to get familiar with requirements and how to prepare for the testing process.
Copyright © 2020 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.