Jonesboro Fire Department In Need Of Firefighters

Jonesboro, AR -- Imagine smoldering heat, fiery falling debris, and a scream for help.

It's all in a days work for a firefighter--but the Jonesboro Fire Department is in need of more firefighters to answer the call that could save someone's life.

"Just having a career where I can help people everyday is just the best job to me," said Adam Alpe.

Alpe is just two weeks into his new job as a Jonesboro firefighter.

He's one of the new hires for the fire department, but the need for more remains.

"If we have about 112 personnel, we need about another 20 so our goal would be about 130 to 135 new personnel," said Kevin Miller.

Kevin Miller is the chief of the training division for the Jonesboro Fire Department.

When firefighters answer the call they want to have three firefighters in the truck, but sometimes there are only two.

Miller says ideally though he'd like to have a fourth seat filled.

"We were about 30 to 35 people short of that goal but this year we got permission to hire 16 new personnel. With the addition of that personnel part of that is putting a new engine company in service.

Miller is optimistic the new stations will be complete in about six months.

He says they will have all of the firefighters they are budgeted for--but he says it's imperative to get them hired and trained now.

"It takes six months up to a year to get them trained to be up to speed where we can use them in an full blown emergency situation," said Miller.

Even if that emergency situation is hazardous for firefighters, the end most often justifies the means.

"I was able to save some clothes and some pictures for a family and they were so grateful and appreciative--I figured then I really liked the job," said Alpe.

In order to hire new firefighters in a timely manner--the testing has been moved to August.

Written applications must be in by August tenth.

The written test is August 18th, and the physical test is the following weekend.

For more information on testing you can call 933-4640 or you can call the Jonesboro Fire Department for details.

That number is 932-2428.

The starting salary for a Jonesboro firefighter is around 27 thousand - five hundred dollars.