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The fire service is one of the most diverse and challenging vocations today. It is this diversity that attracts most men and women to join our ranks.

Many like the feeling they get when they help people in their time of need and some feel it’s their obligation to serve the community. Yet others just want to belong to the team. Whatever motivates you to volunteer, everyone gains the self-satisfaction of being at their best when others are dealing with what is often the worst that life has to offer.

Imagine having to prepare yourself to cope with situations that range from structure fires to hazardous chemical spills to motor vehicle accidents and almost any imaginable emergency in between. This diversity is coupled with the fact that these skills may be needed at any time of the day or night, seven days a week, in any kind of weather, and very often under potentially stressful and emotional circumstances. Yet these same factors contribute to our profession being so personally rewarding.

We realize that firefighting is not for everyone, but we believe that volunteering can be. There is plenty of work to be done on or behind the scene, including running the business of the Rochester Fire Department.

The personal rewards and satisfaction received from what we do is often beyond description. There is the sense of accomplishment when you control a building fire, compassion for accident victims, and fulfillment from teaching fire safety.

Volunteering in emergency services is one of the most important decisions you may make. We hope that you give this decision the time and serious consideration it deserves, and decide to join our ranks.

There are so many benefits to becoming part of the Rochester Fire Department family, here are just a few to get you started.

A Second Family & Lifelong Friendships

At the Rochester Fire Department, you’ll find a second family waiting for you. On duty and off, the members of the department share a common bond to serve our community. Lifelong friendships have been formed in our organization for the last century.  If you’re looking to serve in an organization where you feel rewarded in more ways than one, the Rochester Fire Department offers this and so much more.

Quality Training

You provide the commitment and we provide all of the training for FREE.  From in-house, local, and county training, to state certified courses, and regional and national seminars and conferences, we offer you the opportunity to explore every avenue of emergency services and train you to be the best at what you do.

Duty Uniforms, Apparel, and Length of Service Awards

Look professional and show your Rochester Fire Department pride with your uniform and Department apparel offered through length of service awards, training completion, and more.

Flexible Memberships

Individuals of all ages, abilities, and interests are encouraged to volunteer.  Active members must be at least 18 years old, but our Venturing Crew accepts students that are 16-17 years old.  You can join the Rochester Fire Department to just perform a specialized function or you can get involved in all of the volunteering opportunities we have to offer. Our members come from our community and throughout the region thanks to our robust offering of response services and friendly atmosphere.

Social Events

Members and their families enjoy our annual awards and recognition banquet held each January to recognize the past year’s accomplishments of the department and our volunteers, and to celebrate the dedication of our newly elected administrative and operations officers. Additionally, throughout the year we offer a variety of opportunities for you and your family to get to know the other members of your department in a relaxing atmosphere, including conventions,  parades, parties, family picnics, and fundraisers.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

We protect our firefighters with the latest technology in fire resistive coat, pants, leather boots, gloves, Nomex hoods, and helmets.  

Peace of Mind

We recognize that firefighting and providing emergency services is an inherently dangerous business. That’s why we take extra measures to protect our members. We care about your health, safety and well-being.  Free life insurance benefits and accident coverage is provided at no cost to all members.  And, in times of need, programs are available to provide critical incident stress debriefings and counseling to help our members deal with the emotional impact of the tragedies we are unfortunately exposed to in our line of work.

The Rochester Fire Department offers two types of memberships, active and auxiliary, allowing virtually anyone to participate in the organization.

Active – Active members of the department directly participate in emergency response functions.  We offer virtually unlimited opportunities to explore the exciting world of firefighting and the training to do it safely. Whether you only assist on the outside, or wish to be an interior firefighter, there’s plenty for everyone to do on the fireground. The training is free, but the rewards are priceless.

Auxiliary – Auxiliary Members provide administrative and fundraising support for the operation and the business of our busy fire department. From accounting, secretarial, computer, public relations, maintenance, community education, and administrative functions, there’s plenty to do behind the scenes. Anyone who does not have the desire to participate directly in emergency services, or those who cannot meet the physical demands for active membership, are encouraged to serve our department in this capacity. Auxiliary members do not participate in any emergency responses nor are they required to attend the required training.

Although no previous experience or training is required, you need more than just a desire to help people. You also need courage and dedication, assertiveness, and a willingness to learn new skills and face new challenges. Our service is one that calls on its members to perform hot, sweaty, dirty, strenuous work, often in uncertain and hazardous environments.

Our volunteers need to be team players, respecting each other’s role and contributions. You need to be able to deal with occasional interruptions to your lifestyle, dropping what you’re doing when an alarm sounds to respond to the emergency needs of your fellow citizens.

A new recruit can expect to spend between 5-10 hours each week on fire company business the first six months. This entails meetings, training, emergency responses, and other miscellaneous activities.  Some weeks will be more and other weeks much less. The days of the week or times may vary depending on the level of activity.


You must be at least 16 years of age to apply.

You must complete a Rochester Fire Department application.

You must have a valid social security number.

You must be physically, intellectually, and emotionally capable of performing the duties according to your area of assignment.

You must have no record of felony convictions.


New recruits must successfully pass a Pennsylvania State Police background check.

New members will be considered on probation for a period of one year. Their probationary activities will be reviewed within thirty days following one (1) year of active service and the probationary member will be recommended for continued service or termination at that time.

Removal from probationary status requires that the aforementioned requirements be fulfilled along with the probationary requirements of their membership classification.

All personnel are responsible for assisting in the fund-raising efforts of the organization.

All members must respond to at least fifteen percent (15%) of the emergency calls and Department training to maintain active membership.

Failure to complete the minimum requirements can result in termination of membership.

If you still have additional questions, please call (724) 774-0135.  Or if you are ready to begin your career in the fire service with the Rochester Fire Department, fill out the form below and a Department officer will contact you.

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