Employment standards for Australian Urban firefighters part 4: Physical aptitude tests and standards

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 2015, 57 (10), pp. 1092 - 1097
Issue Date:
Full metadata record
© 2015 American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Objective: Firefighter physical aptitude tests were administered to unskilled subjects and operational firefighters to evaluate the impact that testing bias associated with gender, age, activity-specific skills, or task familiarity may have upon establishing performance thresholds. Methods: These tests were administered in sequence, simulating hazmat incidents, ventilation fan carriage (stairs), motor-vehicle rescues, bushfire incidents, fire attacks, and a firefighter rescue. Participants included two unskilled samples (N=14 and 22) and 143 firefighters. Results: Firefighter performance was not significantly different from the unskilled subjects. Participants from both genders passed the test, with scores unrelated to performance skill or age; however, familiarization significantly improved performance when the test was repeated. Conclusion: These outcomes confirmed this test to be gender-, age-, and skill-neutral. Familiarization effects could be removed through performing a single, pre-selection trial of the test battery.
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