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Sterling Board of Fire & Police Commission

Police Administration


Contact Information


Sterling Board of Fire & Police Commission
Attn: Police Administration
212 3rd Avenue
Sterling, IL 61081


  • 815-632-6600

Position Information

Application Deadline:

  • 10/12/20
  • @ 4:00 PM


  • Starting: $45,990.66 (Effective 5/1/2020)


    • Merit increase upon completion of 1 year probation
    • Paid during attendance of firefighter academy
    • 5.5% of base pay in lieu of holidays
    • 5 shifts of vacation after 1st year with one shift for each additional year
    • 12 sick days earned each year with unlimited accumulation
    • Overtime
    • Uniforms
    • Life Insurance
    • Medical and Dental Insurance
    • Specialty Pay


  • 20

Position Details

The Sterling Fire Department is looking for quality candidates to join our team. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, we strongly encourage all eligible, able-bodied persons with an interest in fire service to apply.

If you or someone you know are interested please contact us for more information on starting a rewarding career.


It is the mission of the Sterling Fire Department to protect life and property, through aggressive fire suppression, fire prevention, education and emergency medical services.

The City of Sterling Fire Department operates out of two fire stations, one is located in the heart of downtown while the second station is located in the east end where businesses are growing, Sterling Fire is an automatic aid agreement with the City of Rock Falls Fire Department and also a member of MABAS Division 30. The fire department also provides fire and rescue services for the Sterling Rural area.

The Sterling Fire Department employs 20 full time firefighters including the Fire Chief. The staff includes:

  • 1 Deputy Chief
  • 3 Captains
  • 3 Lieutenants
  • 12 Firefighters

Various specialty certifications can be obtained.

Public Oriented:

Sterling Fire Department conducts annual fire safety inspections of all businesses in the fire protection area.

Area kindergarteners are taught everything from their address to the use of 911 and fire safety on a monthly basis.

Safety presentations and fire extinguisher training is done for area nursing homes and businesses at their request.

Minimum Qualifications:

There are certain qualifications that an applicant must meet in order to become a Sterling firefighter. The qualifications set forth are established the Board of Fire & Police Commissioners Rules and Regulations, the City of Sterling ordinances, and all applicable state statutes.

Testing Information:

Mandatory orientation will be held for applicants on:

Saturday, October 17, 2020 at 8:00 a.m.

The physical agility and written test will follow orientation.

The testing location is:

St. Mary’s Catholic High School

1101 W. St. Mary’s Road

Sterling, IL

Valid CPAT cards will be accepted.

Check in will start at 7:30 a.m.

The testing process to become a firefighter has several steps:

  • Application
  • Written Test
  • Physical Ability Test
  • Oral Interview
  • Background Investigation
  • Polygraph Examination
  • Psychological Examination
  • Medical Exam including drug screen

Eligibility List:

All candidates that successfully pass the testing process are placed on an eligibility list, according to their final score, that remains in effect for two years. Appointments are then made from this list, as openings exist, contingent upon successful passage of all phases of the examination process. Once an opening exists on the department, the next eligible candidate will be contacted.

Background Investigation:

An in-depth background investigation will be conducted by the Board of Fire & Police Commission.

Polygraph Examination:

The candidate will be scheduled for a polygraph examination. This test must successfully be passed for further consideration.

Psychological Examination:

The candidate will be scheduled for a psychological examination. This test must successfully be passed for further consideration.

Medical Examination:

The candidate will be scheduled for a physical examination. An extensive physical examination to include drug screening is required by the Board of Fire & Police Commission to determine fitness to perform the duties of a firefighter.

Fire Academy:

Upon completion of the academy, a recruit firefighter will begin a period of “on the job” training. During this time the recruit will be taught various aspects of the job as well as being evaluated regularly.


A probationary period of 12 months shall be completed. This period may be extended by a period of time equivalent to the time spent attending the fire academy.

Firefighter Physical Ability Test:

  • Aerial Ladder Climb – This is a pass/fail event.
    • The applicant must climb a minimum of 50 feet, or a height specified by the municipality, up a ladder and back down again without repeated or prolonged stops during the ascent or descent. This test will be conducted using an aerial ladder. It is a test of the individual’s balance and stability as well as fear of great height.
  • Sit-ups – 35 minimum within 1 minute.
    • The applicant must complete as many bent leg sit-ups as possible in one minute with hands held behind their head. This test assesses the endurance level of the applicant’s abdominal muscles. Strong abdominal muscles are needed for maintaining good posture and minimizing lower back problems.
  • Sit and Reach – 16 inches minimum.
    • The applicant will sit flat on the floor with legs straight out in front of his/her body and arms extended out stretching forward to reach beyond their toes. Flexibility of the lower back and upper leg area will be measured. This is important for good job performance involving range of motion and is important in minimizing lower back problems.
  • Extension Ladder Climb – This is a pass/fail event.
    • The applicant must climb and descend approximately 25 feet on a ladder with an air pack of approximately 25 pounds strapped to his/her back. This event tests for an individual’s minimum distance endurance on arms and legs with added weight.
  • Victim Rescue – 12 seconds or less.
    • The applicant will run a distance of 30 feet from the starting point to a vehicle, open the door and remove a 150 pound simulated victim from the front seat and drag it back to the starting point. This event stimulates removing a person from a wrecked and/or burning car to a safe area.
  • Stretcher Carry – This is a pass/fail event.
    • The applicant will climb and descend a flight of stairs while grasping a weighted object of 75 pounds while holding his/her arms in a crooked position. This event stimulates assisting in transporting a stretcher with a victim up or down a flight of stairs.
  • Maze – This is a pass/fail event.
    • The applicant with an air tank and blackened face piece (will not be connected to air tanks), will be required to crawl on his/her hands and knees, following a life-line through a pre-arranged course with obstacles. Any action on the part of the individual to raise or remove the mask prior to completion of the event, or to release both hands from the lifeline, or loss of direction, will result in failure of the event. This event is testing for claustrophobia and how well the individual can handle a life threatening emergency situation.
  • Flexed Arm Hang – Timed event - 30 second minimum.
    • The applicant will mount a chinning bar with his/her palms facing away from their body and then adjust their body to a position where the chin is level with the bar. On command he/she is released from the supports and proceeds to maintain their position as long as possible. Timing will continue until their arms are extended to 135 degrees. This event is used to assess the individual’s upper body and arm strength.
  • Equipment Transport – Timed event – 25 seconds or less.
    • The applicant while wearing an air tank on his/her back, will pick up a 50 foot, 1 ½ inch hose roll and run for a distance of 100 yards. This event is used to assess the applicant’s ability to carry moderate weight while exerting him/herself.




It is your responsibility to provide the following documents to the Fire & Police Commission. If these documents are not provided with the application, your application will not be accepted.

Application & required documents must be turned in no later than 4:00 p.m. on Monday, October 12, 2020 to the Police Administration office, 212 3rd Avenue, Sterling, IL.

  • High School diploma or GED certificate (copy)
  • Certified Birth Certificate (copy)
  • College or University degree (copy)
  • Veterans: Military Service record and DD214 (copy)
  • EMT-P or EMT-B certification (copy)
  • Firefighter Basic or Advanced certification (copy) – if applicable
  • Driver’s license (color copy of both sides)
  • Citizenship and/or naturalization papers – if applicable
  • Social security card (copy)

Positively NO deviation or exception on any requirement.

ALL documents become the property of the Sterling Fire & Police Commission.

Listing for test results will not be available for at least two weeks after the testing date.

Thank you for your interest in the Sterling Fire Department.

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