NORWALK, Conn. – A total of 87 Norwalk Fire Department candidates scored high enough on a recent written test to move on to the oral portion, the department announced Thursday.
Candidates needed a score of 86 or higher to advance. Nearly 1,000 candidates took the Dec. 8 test, and their scores were posted on the city’s website using personal identification numbers to protect their privacy.
The department expects to hire 10 to 15 firefighters from the current group of candidates over the next three years, according to Fire Chief Denis McCarthy.
The oral tests will begin Feb. 5 and run for three consecutive days, McCarthy said.
“There will be four recruits sent to the Fire Academy in September 2013, and the remaining recruits will be hired over the next three years,” he said. The candidate list is valid for two years, but the city’s Board of Fire Commissioners can vote to extend the list for an additional year.
Currently, the Norwalk Fire Department has 130 firefighter positions, with six posts of that group permanently held vacant and absorbed through overtime, according to McCarthy. With senior officers, fire marshals, support and other staffers, the full department has 145.5 positions. One mechanic position is part time.
The department usually hires “from the top 25 of the final list” of candidates in rank order, McCarthy said, taking their combined test scores from the written and oral exams. The candidate’s scores for the two components are weighted each at 50 percent to determine the final rank.