NINE Runcorn residents have successfully become new on-call firefighters.

Their pass-out parade culminated in a drill demonstration in front of the Chief Fire Officer, Paul Hancock, deputy chairman of Cheshire Fire Authority, Halton Clr Stef Nelson, fellow firefighters, family and friends.

Firefighters Sam Allen, Max Gaskell, Daz Jones, Danny McGee, Jimmy Moorcroft, Kevin O'Neill, Matthew Peden, Paul Smith and Stu Stockton have completed five months training.

Clr Nelson said, "We take great pride in the quality of our personnel and in their commitment to serving the public and the communities of Cheshire.

"I take even greater pride in seeing local people compelled to give something back to keep their friends and neighbours safe.

"As an Authority we always want to provide the best possible fire and rescue service. We hope that, as new on-call firefighters, they already feel that they are helping us to achieve that goal."

The new firefighters have mastered the skills of basic hose and hydrant practices, knot tying, health and safety both on the training and incident ground, use of ladders up to 13.5 metres, main pump and light portable pump operation from a tank, pressure fed supply and open water, health and safety and risk assessment methodology, attendance and command and control at incidents along with operational debriefing, and equality and diversity.

The recruitment of on-call firefighters follows public consultation to change how the second fire engine at Runcorn is crewed, with crews on station throughout the day with on-call cover at night.

On-call firefighters come from all walks of life, including shopkeepers, stay at home mums, builders, plumbers, farmers, secretaries, company directors and people who may not currently be employed, and work alongside their full-time colleagues.

Paul Hancock, Cheshire Fire and Rescue's Chief Fire Officer, said: "Working with the fire and rescue service is a thoroughly rewarding experience. It gives individuals the opportunity to work with people from different backgrounds and meet people in the community as well as responding to emergency incidents within Cheshire."

Firefighters don't just fight fires, attending community events and acting as ambassadors is also an important part of the role.

It's is not a voluntary position, on-call firefighters are paid for the work they do.

For more information about on-call firefighters, visit