CFD hiring firefighters, EMTs for first time in 10 years

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Chicago Fire Department House Fire

The Chicago Fire Department will begin hiring firefighters and EMTs for the first time in 10 years.

Sign up is now open through September 16th.  The exam will be given on December 13th or 14th.

Sign up is online only and the fee is $30.

Larry Langford, CFD Media Affairs, says they expect 30,000 people to apply to take the tests. Right now there are 15,000 people on the list– those people would have to reapply.

Langford says the next step is the exam, which is designed as a pass/fail and does not require any knowledge of firefighting or emergency health treatment skills.   Those who pass will be given numbers that are generated randomly.

He estimates 17,000 people will pass based on past experience.

But that doesn’t mean they get into the program. Those people will go on a new waiting list that will be culled as needed. The need for new firefighters will be based on attrition.

Langford says he figures a few hundred at a time will be chosen and they will face is a background check, which must be passed before a drug test is administered.

If that is passed, the next step is a physical.

If the applicant makes it past this point he or she still has to wait for a call from the CFD, which depends on the need of recruits, Langford said.

If that call is placed, then the recruit has a 6-month training curriculum to complete at the Chicago Fire Academy.

Also, there is a new, lower age limit which is 18. “But if you’re 17 now, and will be 18 by the end of 2014, you’re eligible,” Langford said.

The maximum age of an applicant is 37.

Go to to sign up.


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