Operated by the City, the Fort St. John Fire Rescue Division provides services to 22,000 residents under three divisions. They consist of Administration, Suppression, Training Division and the Fire Prevention Division. Within fire suppression operations these services fall; highway rescue and other rescue services, hazardous materials response, confined space rescue along with high angle rope rescue and the Medical First Responder program. The Fire Prevention Division looks after the fire inspection program, fire investigations and our Fire Prevention Public Education Program.
Fire Rescue Services is made up of 29 full-time employees and 6 paid-volunteer firefighters and one full times office admin staff. The departments provide suppression services to a 27 square mile area in and around the city of Fort St. John. Fort St. John Fire Rescue provides highway rescue service to more than 51,000 square kilometers of dedicated highways and region resource roads.
When two young children tragically lost their lives in a fire, residents decided to set up Fort St. John's first fire fighting brigade. In 1942, volunteers equipped a second hand truck with buckets, spades, axes and other rudimentary fire fighting gear. They stationed the truck at Bert Bowes and Bradin Herron's garage and filling station on the main 'east-west' road through the village. The volunteers dug a large hole on the northwest corner of the main crossroad and installed a water cistern, which the town waterman kept full. The brigade erected a post with a bell and rope on the same corner, with a small building to store the hose. When the fire-bell rang, virtually all local businesses had a designated person to answer the call.
The Fort St. John Fire Division was manned entirely by volunteers until 1964, when the City hired its first paid Fire Chief, Carl Lutz. In 1971 the City hired its first paid Fire Fighters, embarking on the composite department that operates to this day. It is currently made up of three day officers, 16 career suppression members, 12 volunteers (paid on call) and one clerical staff.
Established in 1978 by the BC Professional Fire Fighters Association, the British Columbia Professional Fire Fighters' Burn Fund is dedicated to burn prevention, survivor support and recovery programs in the province of British Columbia. It is committed to providing financial assistance for the purchase of equipment, training of medical staff and the operation of a children's burn survivor camp.
The Fort St. John Fire Fighters support both the local and provincial Burn Funds through a variety of community events like car washes, pancake breakfasts and BBQ's. Locally, some of this money is spent on new equipment for our hospital and programs that teach kids to be responsible for their own safety.
The Burn Survivors Summer Camp has hosted close to four hundred children from all areas of British Columbia.
Your generosity to the Fort St. John Professional Fire Fighters Burn Fund is crucial to the continued delivery of programs, services, equipment and support to burn survivors.
We thank you for your numerous contributions. For more information about the British Columbia Professional Fire Fighters Burn Fund please go to burnfund.org
Paid On-call Fire Fighters
Paid on-call fire fighters are your neighbors, your co-workers and your friends. They are men and women in all walks of life that live close to you and respond whenever paged to deal with the emergencies in our city. The City of Fort St. John Fire Rescue Division regularly seeks applications for Paid On-Call Fire Fighters. These positions are open to both male and female applicants.
Applicants must have:
- Commitment - emergencies can happen 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Firefighters are expected to respond to emergency call-outs whenever available.
- Time - firefighters are required to attend two hour (Thursday evenings) practice sessions weekly, and to attend emergency call-outs whenever available.
- Good health - firefighting is a strenuous job, both mentally and physically. There is a pre-employment physical fitness test which is job task orientated and a medical check-up is also required.
- Clean Criminal Record - applicants are required to have a RCMP criminal record search completed before recruit training starts.
- Valid B.C. Driver's License - a class 3 driver's license and a driver's abstract are required.
- permanent resident of the City of Fort St. John
- able to work as a team member
- at least of 19 years of age
- Grade 12 or G.E.D.
- good physical condition (no phobias of height or confined spaces)
- good vision and hearing - no colour impairment
- complete the City of Fort St. John Fire Rescue’s 15 week Recruit Training Program, and ongoing training within the B.C. Fire Fighter Program, and successfully complete probation period (6 months).