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Fire department candidate training

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MONROE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - The Monroe Fire Department is hiring more than twenty firefighters. The search for the top candidates is grueling and there is a lot of competition. This year more woman than ever have applied. Our Nolan Crane shows us what the candidates have to go through to standout.

Before any candidate can put on the helmet and wear the gear that the firefighters wear, they first have to be able to prove that they have what it takes and perform the different task because it is very grueling.

"It's hard but just with the motivation and the will to keep going you can definitely do it," said Metchel Williams.

Metchel Williams is running up and down stairs carrying a 30 pound water hose, lifting heavy equipment, pulling up a ladder and dragging a mannequin that weighs 170 pounds in hopes of qualifying for one of the job openings with the Monroe Fire Department.

"Most of that stuff probably weights more than I do so it was definitely a lot harder for me being that you know I'm kind of small. It wasn't bad at all just I mean if you're a strong person you can definitely do it," said Metchel Williams.

But you have to complete the course without catching your breath.

"There's not a point where they can stop, take a break and continue going, so they have to continuously move. It's very similar in being on the fire ground. You're constantly moving, picking up something, pulling something, dragging something, constantly working so this is how this course is set up," said Richard Hall.

This eight station course is really just the tip of the iceberg because when candidates like Metchel get accepted they say rookie training is a lot more intense.

The Monroe Fire Department has a class one rank which puts them in an elite group. That's one reason they are looking to hire only elite candidates.

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