Firefighter Applicants Disqualified After Inability to Follow Directions

The Austin (TX) Fire Department is hiring. They had 3300 applicants for their written test and currently have 108 positions to fill. As the 3300 applicants who began showing up at the testing site, some of them found out that they had been removed from the application process for filling out the application improperly. 350 to be exact…that is the number of applicants who were spit out for not filling it out properly.

Austin Fire Chief Rhoda Mae Kerr is standing by her process and decision to toss out the incorrect applications.

I couldn’t agree more. If they can’t fill them out correctly then we don’t want them…plain and simple.

Or is it?

Here is where I have an issue. If they filled them out errantly, why weren’t they notified before making the trip to Austin that they were not welcome to take the test?

While there is probably little the applicants can do in this situation, if indeed they were not notified until showing up or already on their way the fault lays in the lap of the Fire Department.

This is something that should have been addressed way before tickets were bought or travel arrangements were made. If they were told they were welcome to take the test, the door should not have been shut in their face.

Jamie Harlor flew in from Hawaii to chase her dream.

“I want to get in…that’s what I want to do,” Harlor said.

She bought a one-way ticket using airline miles to help cover the $370 cost. While at the airport she received the bad news.

“I got an e-mail saying, ‘You’re no longer qualified,’” Harlor explained. “It said I had an improper application.” Read more at

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