Public Safety Careers - Live & Work in Maine

Firefighter/EMT - City of Westbrook

Start Date: March 20, 2024 | End Date: May 31, 2024
County: Cumberland County
Job Type: Public Safety - EMS, Public Safety - Fire

The City of Westbrook was a traditional mill city that has grown and diversified significantly over the last two decades to become a residential hub and business center for the region. Westbrook has a population of over 20,000 and covers 17.36 square miles. Westbrook is centrally located to both urban and rural amenities. Currently, the City employs approximately 195 full-time and 80 variable hour employees covered by five different Collective Bargaining Agreements. The departments contained within the City are the Mayor’s Office, Economic Development, City Clerk, Finance, Human Resources, Planning, Code Enforcement, & Assessing, Public Services, Community Services, General Assistance, Library, Police, Fire & Rescue, and Dispatch.

The City of Westbrook Fire & Rescue Department provides fire, EMS, technical rescue, and other emergency response to the citizenry of Westbrook and mutual aid communities. Additionally, the Fire Department provides confined space standby, public education, code enforcement and ongoing training for our team’s licensure and aptitude. With an operating budget of nearly 4 million dollars, the department employs 46 sworn full-time firefighters, per-diem firefighters and call company firefighters. The annual call volume exceeds 4,900 emergency service responses as well as hundreds of additional education, service and fire prevention responses. 

The Westbrook Fire & Rescue Department is comprised of dual-role career personnel who rotate their emergency duties between fire suppression apparatus and ambulances. Recruits are required to successfully graduate from a six to eight-week new hire drill school and are compensated during training. Drill school training covers multiple topics related to fire, EMS and specialty rescue operations. Once complete candidates will move to 24 hour on / 24 hour off / 24 hour on / 120 hour off rotation. 

The city is willing to train a candidate with no previous fire or EMS experience if they are the best fit for our dynamic team. 

The ideal candidate understands a commitment to public service, desires to serve on a dedicated team and is willing to learn and ultimately step outside their comfort zone to grow. Solid written and oral communication skills are important. The successful candidate exhibits empathy for others but can remain calm, confident and competent in high pressure situations. Most importantly we are searching for a candidate who can work in a strong team environment.

The City of Westbrook is deeply committed to prioritizing diversity, equity, and inclusion, especially in our hiring process. We value a diverse workforce and workplace and strongly encourage women, people of color, LGBT+ individuals, people with disabilities, members of ethnic minorities, foreign-born residents, and veterans to apply.

Job Duties:

  • Responds to fires; makes forced entries into grounds or buildings; cuts or pries open vehicles, machinery or collapsed building material to reach fire or to free trapped victims.
  • Carries or drags charged or empty hose lines to fire scene, around obstacles or up ladders; selects and operates appropriate class of fire extinguisher; hoists hose sections and other equipment; selects appropriate ladder; ascends and descends aerial ladder and climbs, works from, and descends ladders carrying people or equipment and using appropriate safety equipment or procedures. 
  • Performs rescue operations by moving and carrying heavy objects, equipment, or materials. Cuts or pry’s open vehicles to gain access to or to free trapped victims or bodies; carries or assists conscious, unconscious, or deceased victims down ladder or stairs; climbs or crawls through confined spaces; responds to mass casualty incidents such as air disasters; and performs rescues from hazardous chemical or gaseous areas. 
  • Responds to medical and/or traumatic emergency calls by treating a range of illnesses and/or injuries during calls for service using basic and advanced life-support techniques; determines priorities for treatment and transport; operates various medical equipment and apparatus. 
  • Inspects, standpipe and sprinkler systems, fire extinguishers and pre-connected fire hoses, fire escapes and stairways, fire detection and alarm systems; inspects fire exits to ensure appropriate markings and proper operation; inspects large public assemblies to detect fire safety hazards; completes safety surveys and/or inspection reports; inspects and maintains hydrants for damage and tests them for proper functioning as needed; makes on-site visits to facilities to become familiar with specific hazards; explains and demonstrates fire prevention/life safety education methods and common fire hazards. 
  • Attends fire, rescue and EMS related courses, seminars, conferences and other non-departmental training. 
  • Recognizes and preserves evidence at all fires, with the goal of reducing spoliation; observes spectators at fire scenes to detect suspicious behavior; and during investigations guards premises where arson is suspected. 
  • Employees in this position are expected to perform other tasks as directed.

Education and Qualifications:

  • High School Diploma or GED, with preference given to those that hold a bachelor’s or associate degree from an accredited college or university with course work in emergency medical services, fire science, fire administration, business or public administration or a related field. 
  • Must hold a current license as a State of Maine EMT-Basic. State of Maine Paramedic license must be maintained within 24 months of hire. 
  • Must possess and maintain a valid Maine Driver’s License with clean driving record. 
  • Knowledgeable with the locations of streets, water supply, principal buildings and other physical locations within the City of Westbrook. 
  • Ability to maintain a high level of confidentiality regarding department and or city affairs, which are not open to the public or other city employees. 
  • Ability to operate an emergency vehicle with sound judgment and skill. 

Knowledge of: 

  • Operational characteristics, services and activities of an emergency service program including fire suppression, fire prevention, emergency medical services, hazardous materials response and associated programs, services and operations. 
  • Incident command administration techniques. 
  • Problem solving techniques and methodology. 
  • Local concerns and political issues. 
  • Methods and techniques of emergency medical response. 
  • Principles and practices of disaster preparedness, response and recovery. 
  • Operational characteristics of fire apparatus and equipment. 
  • Public safety computer systems. 

Ability to: 

  • Analyze problems, identify alternative solutions, project consequences of proposed actions and implement recommendations in support of goals. 
  • Research, analyze and evaluate new service delivery methods and techniques. 
  • Retain presence of mind and act quickly and calmly in emergency situations. 
  • Operate and effectively use specialized fire tools and equipment including safety equipment. 
  • Operate modern office equipment and computers including applicable software applications; learn to effectively use a variety of departmental computer and computer-related equipment. 
  • Maintain contact and preserve good relations with the public; respond to requests and inquiries from the public. 
  • Effectively present and communicate information/directions in one-on-one and small group situations to the public and other employees of the organization. 
  • Meet the physical requirements necessary to perform the assigned duties safely and effectively. 
  • Communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing. 
  • Establish and maintain effective working relationships with those contacted in the course of work.  

License or Certification: 

  • High School Diploma or GED, with preference for an associate or bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with course work in emergency medical services, fire science, fire administration, business or public administration or a related field. 
  • Must hold and maintain a valid Maine Driver’s license. 
  • Must hold and maintain a valid Maine EMS license. 
  • NFPA Firefighter I and II Certification. 
  • Ability to climb ladders and work at considerable heights. 
  • Be knowledgeable of the locations of streets, principal buildings and other physical locations within the City of Westbrook. 

Testing:

The Firefighter/EMS Provider Recruit testing process covers the following four areas: 

  • Physical Agility Test 
  • Written Exam 
  • Public Safety Commission Interview / Assessment Center 
  • Chief’s Interview 

This position is subject to the following successful competition with a passing result: 

  • Pre-employment medical screening 
  • Pre-employment psychological screening 
  • Pre-employment background and reference checks 
  • Pre-employment integrity testing 

Physical Abilities Testing – What to Expect 

  1. Treadmill Walk – 5 Min at 3.7mph 
  2. Stair Climb – Climb 5 flights of stairs up and down. 
  3. Hose Drag – Strap over shoulder attached to weight sled (37 pounds of force) to simulate dragging 100ft of hose. 
  4. Equipment Carry – Pick up 35-pound weights from a 53” shelf, 1 at a time, and place on floor. Then carry two 35-pound wights (1 in each hand) 40 feet and back. Then place weights on the floor one at a time and return them to the 53” shelf to simulate a saw carry. 
  5. Ladder Lift and Carry – Lift ladder from the floor to overhead position (total weight of 45 pounds) and then return to chest height. Then walk forward 20 feet with the ladder and backwards 20 feet with ladder and return the ladder to the floor. 
  6. Ladder Raise – Cable machine with rope attached, pull from overhead to waist, hand over hand (3 reps) while sitting on stool (60 pounds of force). This will be performed 4 times. 
  7. Search – The candidate will duck walk for 20 feet then bear crawl for 20 feet. 
  8. Rescue – Grasp a 185-pound mannequin by the handles and drag it 35 feet, make a 180-degree turn, and return the mannequin to the starting position (total of 70 feet) 
  9. Ceiling Breach (push) – Using a cable column with a bat handle attached. Hold the bar in a vertical position as if holding a pike pole of a sheetrock puller. With the pully at that the lowest position, push up on the bar (pushing upward) with a force of at least 20 pounds. Preform 4 sets of 5 reps, changing hand position between each rep. 
  10. Ceiling Breach (pull) – With the pully at the highest position, pull down on the bar (pulling down) with a force of 50 pounds. Perform 4 sets of 5 reps, changing hand position in between each rep. 
  11. Generator / Fan Carry – Pick up a 50-pound box from the floor, carry 25 feet, turn 180 degrees, then carry the box back to the starting position and place the box on the floor. 

In addition to the seven job related tasks, an applicant must also successfully ascend/descend the aerial and complete a claustrophobia test. These two tasks are pass/fail and are not timed. 

Written Exam 

This timed exam will measure both cognitive ability and non-cognitive (behavior orientation) and include verbal comprehension, verbal expression, problem sensitivity, deductive reasoning, inductive reasoning, information ordering, mathematical reasoning, stress tolerance, team orientation and motivation/attitude. To successfully pass the written exam, applicants must have a minimum score of 70. Study materials for candidates can be found at https://iosolutions.com/shop/?swoof=1&pa_examination=nfsi

Compensation and Benefits:

  • Competitive salary range of $19.91/hour - $31.24/hour based on licensure.
  • This position is covered by the Fire & Rescue collective bargaining agreement.  
  • A comprehensive benefits package includes medical (PPO plan at 12% premium cost, plus HRA reimbursement), dental, vision, life insurance (one times base salary), short and long-term disability, and employee assistance program.
  • Generous paid leave including vacation, sick, and 14 holiday per year.
  • Tuition reimbursement for job-related courses.
  • Retirement program of the Maine Public Employees Retirement Plan (Maine PERS).

Application Process:

  • Whether you have found us through our jobs page, Indeed, the Maine Municipal Association (MMA), Facebook, or other platforms, you can apply online, via email, or in-person. Be sure to include all necessary information, including the position applied for, salary requirement, experience, education, qualifications, and certifications. 
  • Interested applicants should send their resume and letter of interest to the Human Resources Department at HR@westbrook.me.us.
  • In-Person Applications at 2 York Street, Westbrook, ME

The City of Westbrook is an Equal Opportunity Employer and prohibits discrimination or harassment of any kind. We recruit, employ, train, compensate, and promote without regard to race, religion, creed, color, national origin, age, gender, gender identity, and or expression, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, veteran status, or any other basis protected by applicable federal, state, or local law. 

Applicants selected as finalist for this position will be subject to a comprehensive reference and background check, medical clearance, and physical agility test.

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