Fire services in France

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French civilian firemen.
French fire engine.
French Fire brigade Citroën Berlingo in Les Sables-dOlonne

The fire service in France is known as Sapeurs-pompiers, except in Marseille, where naval "sailor-firefighters", marins-pompiers, provide fire and rescue services.

There are two categories:

There are approximately 246,900 fire service personnel in France operating 15,642 emergency vehicles out of 6,894 emergency centres[1].

Pompier (firefighter) etymologically comes from the concept of pumping (water) and refers to the manual pumps that were originally used. Sapeur means "sapper" and refers to the first official firefighting unit created by Napoleon I which was part of the military engineering arm.

Categories[edit]

As of December 2015, there were 246,900 sapeurs-pompiers in France:[1]

  • 17% professionals (paid)
  • 78% sapeurs-pompiers volontaires (volunteers and hourly paid)
  • 5% militaires (military)

Women comprised 14% of the civil sapeurs-pompiers.

The service de santé et de secours medical (medical emergency service) numbered 11,910.

The administrative personnel, technicians and specialists numbered 10,900.

The jeunes sapeurs-pompiers (Junior fighters) and cadets numbered 27,800.

There are also few (328) civil volunteer firefighters (sapeurs-pompiers volontaires civils). The civil volunteers status was created in 2000 when the conscription was abolished. It is a national service, i.e. full-time job for 6 months to 2 years, but with a reduced pay.

Organization[edit]

Headquarters are located in:

Direction des sapeur-pompiers
Immeuble le Garance
18-20 rue des Pyrénées
75020 Paris

Local organization is based in the various Departmental Fire and Rescue Services (Services Departmentaux d'Incendie et de Secours (SDIS)).

Personnel and rank insignia[edit]

Personnel strength of the French Fire Services 2015
Category Status Number
of fire fighters
and paramedics
Civilian fire services professionals 40,354
Civilian fire services volunteers 168,727
Volunteer fire brigades [a] volunteers 13,631
Fire Services EMS professionals
volunteers
11,910
Military fire services [b] military 11,752
Military fire services EMS military 173
  1. ^ Not integrated into the fire services.
  2. ^ Including the Emergency Preparedness
    and Response Units from the
    French Combat engineering corps
Source:[1]

Civilian professional fire fighters are local government civil servants of class A, B, and C. Civil servants class A and B, and their volunteer counterparts, are trained at the National Fire College, École nationale supérieure des officiers de sapeurs-pompiers.[2] Given their military origin, rank insignia follow those of the French Army.

Class C[edit]

Professional fire fighters class C are recruited from volunteer fire fighters or youth fire fighters, age 18 or above, with three years service as Sapper without a civil service exam. Corporals can be recruited with a civil service exam open to direct entry candidates who passed middle school, and through a civil service exam open to volunteer fire fighters or youth fire fighters, with three years service. In 2017, Sapeur de 1re classe was abolished and Sapeur de 2e classe was replaced by the rank of Sapeur[3], except for volonteers whose grades remained unchanged.

Promotion to Corporal can occur after three years as Sapper; to Chief Corporal after five years as Corporal.[4] Sergents are selected through a civil service exam open to team leaders.[5] Promotion to Adjudant and Chief Adjudant can occur after four years as Sergeant/Chief Sergeant.[5]

Since 2013, Chief Adjutant is the highest NCO rank of most departments as the rank of Major has been abolished.

Grade Insignia Basic role
Sapeur SP-SP2.png Team Member
Sapeur de 1re classe

(Volonteers only)

SP-SP1.png Team Member
Caporal SP-CPL.png Team Member

Team Leader

Caporal-chef SP-CPC.png Team Leader
Sergent SP-SGT.png Crew Commander
one fire appliance with one team
Sergent-chef SP-SGC.png Ditto
three years in the grade
Adjudant SP-ADJ.png Senior Crew Commander
one fire appliance with two teams
Adjudant-chef SP-ADC.png Ditto
three years in the grade

Sources:[6][7]

Class B[edit]

Professional fire fighters class B are recruited through civil service exams open to direct entry candidates with a foundation degree in engineering, and to fire fighters class C with four years service, leading to employment as Lieutenant 1st class; and through a civil service exam open to fire fighters class C qualified as senior crew commanders, leading to employment as Lieutenant 2nd class.[8] 75% of the promotions from Lieutenant 2nd class to Lieutenant 1st class are through a civil service exam open to Lieutenants 2nd class with three years in the grade; 25 % through selection from Lieutenants 2nd class with five years in the grade. 75 % of the promotions from Lieutenant 1st class to Lieutenant above class are through a civil service exam open to Lieutenants 1st class with three years in the grade; 25 % through selection from Lieutenants 1st class with five years in the grade.[9] Direct entry lieutenants 1st class are undergoing a 32 weeks course at the French Fire College (Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Officiers de Sapeurs-Pompiers). Lieutenants 2nd class are undergoing a 12-week course at the Fire College, while Lieutenants 1st class promoted from 2nd class, are in addition undergoing a course of 6 weeks.[10][11][12]

Grade Insignia Basic roles
Lieutenant de 2e classe SP-LTN.png Incident Commander Bronze/Sector Commander
2-4 crews
Station Manager
Nine or less professional fire fighters
Lieutenant de 1re classe SP-LTN.png Incident Commander Bronze/Sector Commander
2-4 crews
Station Manager
Ten or more professional fire fighters
Lieutenant hors classe SP-LTN.png Incident Commander Bronze/Sector Commander
2-4 crews
Station Manager
Twenty or more professional fire fighters

Sources[6][7]

Class A[edit]

Professional fire fighters class A are recruited through civil service exams open to direct entry candidates with a bachelor's degree in engineering, and to fire fighters class B qualified as sector commanders.[13] Commandants are selected through a civil service exam from captains with three years in the grade; lieutenant-colonels from commandants with five years in the grade[13]. Direct entry captains are undergoing a 42-week course, and internal entry captains a 10-week course, at the National Fire College.[14][15]

Grade Insignia Basic roles
Capitaine SP-CNE.png Incident Commander Silver/Operations Commander
2-4 sectors
Station Manager
Thirty or more professional fire fighters
Commandant SP-CEN.png Incident Commander Gold
Incident Commander Silver/Operations Commander
2-4 sectors
Area Manager
Station Manager
Fifty or more professional fire fighters
Lieutenant-colonel SP-LCL.png Incident Commander Gold
Area Manager
Station Manager
Hundred or more professional fire fighters

Sources[6][7]

Class A+[edit]

Professionnal fire fighters class A+ hold senior management positions, such as brigade manager, deputy brigade manager, or senior expert for the governement[16].

Colonels are recruited through civil service exams open to fire fighters class A qualified as area managers. The laureates are undergoing a 32-week course at the National Fire College.[17]

Colonels hors-classe are selected from colonels with four years in the grade; contrôleurs généraux from colonels hors-classe with at least 8 years of experience as brigade manager, senior manager for the government, or similar positions that are listed by a decree.[16]

The contrôleur général insignia has 2 pyres. However, some officers who handle special responsibilities within the government can have a 3 pyres insignia[6][18].

Grade Insignia Basic roles
Colonel SP-COL.png Brigade Manager
Deputy Brigade Manager
Incident Commander Gold
Area Manager
Colonel hors-classe SP-COL.png Brigade Manager
Deputy Brigade Manager
Incident Commander Gold
Area Manager
Contrôleur général SDIS CGL.png Brigade Manager
Deputy Brigade Manager
Incident Commander Gold
Area Manager
Contrôleur général SDIS CGL1.png Brigade Manager
Deputy Brigade Manager
Incident Commander Gold
Area Manager

Sources[6][7]

Responses[edit]

In 2015, there were 4,453,300 interventions:[1]

  • Fires 300,700
  • Car accidents 279,400
  • Medical emergencies 3,413,300
  • Technologic emergencies 53,200
  • Other 406,700

Paris and Marseille comprise 10% of the national total.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Les statistiques des services d’incendie et de secours 2016 Retrieved 2017-02-16.
  2. ^ "Missions de l'ENSOP." Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Officiers de Sapeurs-Pompiers. Retrieved 2017-02-14.
  3. ^ "Décret n° 2017-164 du 9 février 2017 modifiant le décret n° 2012-520 du 20 avril 2012 portant statut particulier du cadre d'emplois des sapeurs et caporaux de sapeurs-pompiers professionnels". legifrance.gouv.fr. Retrieved 2018-09-23.
  4. ^ "Décret n° 2012-520 du 20 avril 2012 portant statut particulier du cadre d'emplois des sapeurs et caporaux de sapeurs-pompiers professionnels". legifrance.gouv.fr. Retrieved 2018-09-23.
  5. ^ a b "Décret n° 2012-521 du 20 avril 2012 portant statut particulier du cadre d'emplois des sous-officiers de sapeurs-pompiers professionnels, Chapitre II, Article 4." Legifrance. Retrieved 2017-02-14.
  6. ^ a b c d e "Arrêté du 8 avril 2015 modifié fixant les tenues, uniformes, équipements, insignes et attributs des sapeurs-pompiers" (PDF). interieur.gouv.fr. Retrieved 2018-09-23.
  7. ^ a b c d "Décret n°90-850 du 25 septembre 1990 portant dispositions communes à l'ensemble des sapeurs-pompiers professionnels". Retrieved 2018-09-23.
  8. ^ "Décret n° 2012-522 du 20 avril 2012 portant statut particulier du cadre d'emplois des lieutenants de sapeurs-pompiers professionnels." Legifrance. Retrieved 2017-02-14.
  9. ^ "Brochure réforme de la filière SP." Le SDIS de Maine-et-Loire. Retrieved 2017-02-14.
  10. ^ Formations d’intégration de lieutenants de 1° classe (FILT 1C). Retrieved 2017-03-29.
  11. ^ Formations d’intégration de lieutenants de 2° classe (FILT 2C) Retrieved 2017-03-29.
  12. ^ Formations d’adaptation de lieutenants de 1° classe (FALT 1C) Retrieved 2017-03-29.
  13. ^ a b "Décret n° 2016-2008 du 30 décembre 2016 portant statut particulier du cadre d'emplois des capitaines, commandants et lieutenants-colonels de sapeurs-pompiers professionne". legifrance. Retrieved 2018-09-23.
  14. ^ Formations d’intégration de capitaine de SPP (FIC) Retrieved 2017-03-28.
  15. ^ Formations d’adaptation de capitaine de SPP (FAC) Retrieved 2017-03-28.
  16. ^ a b "Décret n° 2016-2002 du 30 décembre 2016 portant statut particulier du cadre d'emplois de conception et de direction des sapeurs-pompiers professionnels". legifrance. Retrieved 2018-09-23.
  17. ^ "Arrêté du 4 janvier 2017 relatif à la formation des colonels de sapeurs-pompiers professionnels". legifrance. Retrieved 2018-09-23.
  18. ^ "Arrêté du 2 février 2017 pris en application de l'article 12 du décret n° 2016-2002 du 30 décembre 2016 portant statut particulier du cadre d'emplois de conception et de direction des sapeurs-pompiers professionnels". legifrance. Retrieved 2018-09-23.

External links[edit]