Keeping personnel and equipment safe, you will be trained to assess, control and extinguish fires whilst providing aid at crash sites.

  • Service
  • Specialisation
  • Starting Salary
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About the role

As an Emergency Responder, your job is to protect Army and civilian personnel and equipment from fire and fire hazards. Army Emergency Responders are provided with world class equipment and trained to the highest standard of fire fighting techniques responding to emergencies within the camp or the local area if needed.

Job on base

A typical shift for an Army Emergency Responder might involve trade training, fire safety promotion, physical training, as well as the servicing and maintenance of equipment. When on duty, you could be called out to an emergency at any moment; Army Emergency Responders are used as first responders to fires or accidents on camp and within the local area. You will also ensure that the camps have adequate fire fighting equipment and that any hazardous substances are stored correctly.

Job on deployment

In the Field when deployed as a Emergency Responder you will monitor and extinguish any fires that may start during live ammunition firing exercises. Emergency Responders may also be deployed in support of other nation emergency crews in emergencies such as the 2008 Queensland bush fires.

An Army term you’ll find is, train hard and fight easy, so we always train for the worse case scenario so that when we get the real thing it’s got to be straight forward for us.

Career progression and training

Career Progression
Basic Training
Job Training
Ongoing Training

As your career develops, you will gain the opportunity to receive heavy vehicle training; enabling you to operate the Army’s latest fire fighting assets.

Upon successful enlistment into the Army you’ll be posted to Waiouru Army base. Here you will do 16 weeks of basic military training to find out if you’ve got what it takes to be in the Army, and learn various subjects including:

  • Organisation and Administration
  • Army Customs and Protocol
  • Drill and Parades
  • Military Field Skills and Weapon Training
  • First Aid
  • Physical Fitness

This is an eight week course held at the School of Military Engineering, Linton Military Camp. This is the first course conducted for most trades within the Royal New Zealand Engineers. It introduces you to the combat side of being an engineer before you undertake your specific trade. The course covers the basics of field engineering including bridging, water supply, explosives, field defences, obstacles, booby traps, boating and other subjects. After the course, you will have a good understanding of field engineering and also be qualified as an Army (explosives) Demolition Handler.


This is a 12-week fire fighting course conducted at Linton Military Camp. This course covers all aspects of fire fighting including rural, domestic and crash incidents. It is a combination of theory and practical work, where you will learn to use some of the most up to date fire fighting and rescue equipment in the world.

You will be trained how to assess, control and extinguish fires. You will also learn how to correctly respond and aid at crash sites. You will attend a course at Christchurch International Airport, where you will be taught how to safely control and extinguish a fire inside an aeroplane, where temperatures can reach 1000 degrees.

Ongoing training is conducted at your unit and at the Fire School, with a mix of trade and personal development courses. The Defence Fire Service also sends personnel to attend selected New Zealand Fire Service courses. This ensures that our Fire Fighters, methods and techniques are of the highest standard and at a similar level to our civilian counterparts.

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Salary and benefits

Careers in the Army are well-rewarded, diverse and exciting. As you become more experienced and move up through the ranks, gaining additional skills and qualifications, your salary will rise accordingly.




Starting Salary


Higher Rank

Benefits and allowances

There are many additional benefits to being in the Defence Force, that will make your money go further.

For example, on top of your basic salary you can expect ‘Military Factor’. This provides you with significant extra financial rewards because of the commitment you’ve made to serve your country.

Free medical and dental
Access to subsidised equipment on base
Subsidised food on base
Competitive superannuation, up to 4% with KiwiSaver
Sponsored tertiary study programmes at all levels

Entry requirements

Fitness and Medical
Period of Service
  • You must be at least 17 years of age
  • Meet the citizenship and security requirements to gain CV security clearance for this trade
  • A class 1 restricted driving licence is required

You must have achieved the NCEA level 1 Literacy and Numeracy requirements

Find out more about the NCEA levels and certificate requirements

  • You must be medically fit for service.
  • Colour perception restrictions may apply.

There are strict citizenship and security requirements to gain the required CV security clearance for this trade.

Find out if you’re eligible here.

There may be a return of service period for this trade.

Please contact our 0800 number or talk to your Candidate Experience Facilitator for more information.


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