Eight new firefighters join CKFES

Image released by CKFES.

Chatham-Kent Fire & Emergency Services has hired eight new firefighters.

Fire officials say the recruits completed a two weeks review of core competencies and familiarization with allied organizations, led by Training Officer, Kyle Sleightholm.

A graduation ceremony was held on Saturday attended by Mayor Darrin Canniff and several members of Chatham-Kent Council, along with family, friends and colleagues to celebrate. Fire & Paramedic Chief Bob Crawford presented each recruit with their helmet signifying the commencement of their service careers with the department.

“We are delighted to have successfully recruited individuals with diverse experiences. Three of our new career firefighters were already members of the department, in the volunteer sector,” says Chief Crawford, “Our eight recruits include four CK natives, two who currently reside in Chatham-Kent and two others who are ‘coming baCK’.”

The department adapted the recruitment process for full-time firefighters in July of last year. Working in partnership with the Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs Candidate testing program (OFAI), all applications had to successfully complete four levels of extensive testing.

“Over 100 people applied to the posting and over the course of a week nearly 50 candidates where interviewed,” explains Operations Chief Chris Case,”As we had the OFAI designation we knew that the technical skills and abilities of the candidates were unquestionable, what we wanted to look into was the passion the individual had for public service and the understanding of how important it is to engage the community to prevent fires.”

Image: CKFES.
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