Volunteer Firefighter Requirements
Volunteer firefighters are only required by Florida State Statute to be certified to the Firefighter I level and First Responder; however, 27 of the 50 active volunteers are trained to Firefighter II with one volunteer firefighter trained as an ALS paramedic.
Volunteer firefighters must accumulate at least 240 hours of training annually, as well as refresher training in hazardous materials response, First Responder/EMS, and radiological training.
Volunteer firefighters are required to obtain their certifications within one year of joining the Department if they choose to be classified as a combat firefighter.
Frequently Asked Questions | Support Firefighter | Volunteer Firefighter Application
Support volunteers consist of members of the three rehabilitation units, trainees currently enrolled in the Firefighter I classes, and volunteers who can not meet the intense demands of combat firefighting. Support members serve in many capacities at the scene including: changing air bottles, assisting in basic medical rehab, placing equipment back in service, preparing reports, and providing hydration and nutritional supplements.
To Become a Volunteer Firefighter, you must:
Be at least 18 years of age
Have a High School Diploma or equivalency
Be able to pass a Criminal background check
Be able to pass the firefighter physical and drug screen
Citrus County has openings for volunteer firefighters at all our stations. If you want the satisfaction of helping others and meet the requirements listed above, then WE NEED YOU!
Volunteer Firefighter Frequently Asked Questions:
- What volunteer opportunities are available with Citrus County Sheriff’s Office Fire Rescue?
- Our department has a need for personnel in the following areas:
- Paid-on-Call Firefighter - Engages in direct fire and rescue activities. This position requires a minimum of certified training as a Fire Fighter I and Medical First Responder.
- Support Unit - Operates outside of the hazard zone to support other firefighters.
- Rehab Unit - Operates outside the hazard zone and provides rehabilitation services and refreshments at emergency scenes.
- Fire Safety House/Fire Marshal’s Office - This group visits various locations such as schools and daycares to teach children and adults about fire safety.
- Clerical Support - Various clerical related duties including filing, data input, and scanning of documents.
- Logistics Support – Assists the logistics section with supplying fire stations and personnel with items necessary to operate.
- Where can I get an application to become a volunteer?
You may pick up an application at the Sheriff’s Office Operations Center located at 1 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Ave., Inverness. The application may be download from the Citrus County Sheriff’s Office website.
The application will then need to be returned to the Sheriff’s Human Resources office at the Operations Center.
- What documents do I need to submit with my application?
When you submit your application, we will need a legible copy of your Florida Driver’s License, Social Security Card, and High School Diploma or GED.
- Who sets the requirements to be a firefighter in Citrus County?
All training requirements to become a volunteer or career firefighter are governed by the requirements of Florida Statues 633 and Florida Administrative Code 69A-37. Additional requirements may be set by the Sherriff’s Office Fire Rescue division.
- Why must I have a high school diploma or GED to be a firefighter?
A High School Diploma or GED is required by Florida Statutes 633 and Florida Administrative Code 69A-37.
- I live outside of Citrus County; can I still become a volunteer?
Yes, you may; however, if you live further than ten (10) minutes away from the closest active Citrus County fire station, you are not eligible for Citrus County to pay for your fire school attendance. You will also need to meet alternate good standing guidelines to remain with the organization.
- What steps are there in the volunteer application approval process?
Approval to become a volunteer consists of these steps:
- Driver’s License Check
- Criminal Background Check
- Drug Screening
- Medical Examination
- Approval by the Sheriff or deignee
- How long does it take the application process to be completed?
The time to process your application after we have received it varies; however, it usually averages four (4) to six (6) weeks. The majority of this time is spent awaiting your medical examination appointment and obtaining those results.
- Do I need to have a medical examination and what medical testing is done as part of the application process?
Yes, you will be required to take a medical examination. The medical examination will consist of a general physical examination, hearing test, various blood tests, drug screen, EKG, chest x-ray, vision test, and TB examination. All components of the primary medical examination are paid for by Citrus County. However, if you are referred to another physician for clarification of any medical situation, the cost of such visits and treatment is not paid for by Citrus County.
- Does Citrus County provide my uniforms and equipment?
Citrus County provides all of your uniform and safety equipment needs free of charge; however, you are responsible for the up[keep and safekeeping of these items.
- How do I know what fire station I would be assigned to?
You will have the choice of which fire station you will be assigned to. Most volunteers choose the station closest to their residence. Out-of-county personnel will be assigned to an officer and fire station.
- Is there a minimum number of hours that I must put in each month to remain a volunteer?
No, there are no minimum hours per month that you must volunteer; however, you are required to earn 27 good standing points each month. These points are earned by responding to calls, attending training sessions, standing by or performing work at the station, or participating in other events.
- What other duties are expected of me as a volunteer?
In addition to responding to emergency calls, you are expected to attend training and meeting nights, and to perform the station duties assigned by your officer.
- Am I able to ride at other stations or am I limited to the one I am assigned to?
Yes, once you have been accepted as a volunteer, you may ride along with other stations.
- I heard that I must be certified as a Florida State Firefighter I to remain as a volunteer. How long do I have to complete that program?
Yes, you must become at least Firefighter I certified within one (1) year as required by Florida Administrative Code. There are only a few exceptions to this rule, such as volunteering in the support or rehab unit, assisting with public education, or clerical and logistical support. Please speak with the Fire Administration staff for information regarding these exceptions.
- Does Citrus County pay for my training or school classes?
Yes, Citrus County does pay for your training and school classes; however, you must be active and in good standing as a volunteer for ninety (90) days before your fire school will be paid for.
- If Citrus County pays for my schooling, is there a minimum amount of time that I must remain a paid-on-call firefighter?
You are required to remain active and in good standing as a paid-on-call firefighter with Citrus County for a period of three (3) years after completion of Fire Fighter I training. You will be required to sign a written agreement regarding these details.
- What happens if I do not fulfill my three (3) year obligation to serve as a paid-on-call firefighter after receiving my training paid for by the County?
Should you fail to honor your three (3) year commitment, you will be responsible to reimburse the Citrus Sheriff’s Office Fire Rescue for funds that were expended for your training. This may be on a prorated basis depending on how long you serve after completion of your classes.
- If I am a paid-on-call firefighter for Citrus County, does this guarantee that I will get a career firefighter job with Citrus County when positions are open?
No. By volunteering as a paid-on-call firefighter with Citrus County does not guarantee that you will be hired as a career firefighter by Citrus County; however, Citrus County paid-on-call fire fighters do receive preference during the hiring process provided that they meet all requirements of the fulltime position.
- As a volunteer, do I receive pay for participating in events or responding to calls?
Paid-on-call firefighter positions do receive a reimbursement of $10.86 per call based on the department’s payroll related rules. All other positions are volunteer with no pay or reimbursement.
- As a volunteer, am I expected to report to duty during times of disaster such as hurricanes and tornados?
Yes, you are expected to report to duty during these times as your schedule and other work obligations allow. Emergencies of this nature increase the demand for responders and all personnel are necessary components of the recovery process.