The Role of the Retained Duty System Firefighter 

The Retained Duty System (RDS) comprises on-call Firefighters who live and/or work in the local community of a Retained Fire Station.  They are individuals who may already have full or part time employment or may not work (for example, stay at home parents). 

The RDS Firefighter fulfils the same role as the WDS Firefighter and provides a front line service.  The individuals that serve as RDS Firefighters have a variety of backgrounds and include builders, farmers, administrators and stay at home parents. 

There is currently a shortage of people who will respond for us on an ‘on-call basis’, particularly in small towns and rural communities where there are fewer people who both live and work in the area.  The RDS is an important part of the local community and local services. 

RDS Firefighters must live or work near a Retained Fire Station and be able to arrive at the Station within five minutes of a call.  Some employers are flexible and enable RDS Firefighters to leave work to attend incidents and training (more information on the benefits to organisations in employing an RDS Firefighter can be found using the tabs on the left had side of the page).  Self employed individuals who work in the local area are also welcome to apply to become RDS Firefighters.

The South Wales Fire and Rescue Service is currently short of people to fulfil RDS Firefighter roles, especially during midweek daytime hours.  A call to the Station can be expected two to three times per week but individuals will not necessarily need to attend each call out (dependent on the numbers of Firefighters on duty).

RDS Firefighters are recruited and selected in the same way as WDS Firefighters, following the National Firefighter Selection process.  There is more information about the RDS and the selection process in the ‘Retained Duty System Information Pack’.

• Terms and Conditions of Service – Retained Duty System Firefighters


           Contact Details

Recruitment and Assessment Team
Tel: 01443 232200 (Normal Working Hours)

24 hour Recruitment Line 0800 0283615


South Wales Fire & Rescue Service
Forest View Business Park
CF72 8LX

           Related Information
Page Last Updated on 27/3/2017