Battalion Fire Chief

City of Watsonville , California

Job Information 



Senior Level


$11,951.92 - $16,016.74 Annually

Application Deadline 


07/15/2020 05:00 PM PDT

Recruitment Type 

Open Competitive


Under administrative direction, may serve as a Duty or Staff Chief. The Battalion Fire Chief will be assigned duties and responsibilities that involve interaction with fire personnel, City personnel, and the community; respond to and assume command at emergencies or as part of the incident command team; and assume various emergency and non-emergency duties, and committee work as assigned.


This job class functions at a management level of classification and serves as a member of the Fire Department Management Team. The Battalion Fire Chief will be assigned either a 5 day/8 hour shift, a 4 day/10 hour shift, or to a 24 hour platoon duty as decided by the Fire Chief.


Duties may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  •   serves as incident commander at emergencies

  •   serves as acting Division Chief

  •   serves as part of the incident command team

  •   serves as Duty Chief, or Staff Chief as assigned

  •   plans, organizes, and coordinates projects and programs as assigned

  •   understands the principles of the incident command system

  •   understands, interprets, and enforces federal, state, and local laws and regulations as they relate to fire and life safety, training standards, fire prevention codes and fire investigation.

  •   performs fire and life safety inspections under the direction of the Division Chief, Fire Marshal

    and/or Fire Chief

  •   serves on various workgroups, advisory groups or committees as assigned

  •   attends meetings day or night as the Fire Department representative

  •   implements orders, regulations, ordinances, and laws relative to the mission of the Fire


  •   analyzes data, researches new methods, and communicates verbally and in writing findings

    that relate to a project, program, or work assignment

  •   effectively interacts with the public, fire personnel, and City employees to solve problems,

    identify solutions, and implement programs and projects

  •   implements Fire Department training and work safety programs

  •   revises and prepares Fire Department rules, regulations, projects, programs, principles and


  •   reviews, understands, and assists in the preparation of the Fire Department’s annual budget

  •   ensures the proper operation and maintenance of all Fire Department apparatus and


  •   reviews and prepares activity reports, training bulletins, fire suppression and prevention

    reports, staff reports and other written reports as directed

  •   serves in the Department’s management role in the City’s Emergency Operations Center

  •   provides training, guidance, and leadership to all members of the Fire Department

  •   provides assistance in the Fire Department’s operation and administration

  •   performs other related duties as assigned by the Division Chief and/or Fire Chief

  •   supervises the work of the Fire Captain assigned to shifts

  •   performs Fire Prevention duties as assigned


Knowledge of:

  •   modern principles, practices, and techniques of department administration and operation

  •   methods and principles of fire suppression, investigation, and prevention

  •   proper use and operation of firefighting apparatus and equipment

  •   analytical techniques and effective methods of solving problems

  •   principles of supervision and training

  •   knowledge and development of accounting and budgeting principles

  •   incident command system, hazardous materials recognition, EMS/Paramedic procedures,

    confined space rescue, urban search and rescue techniques, - multi-casualty incidents and

    wildland fires

  •   cultural awareness, gender, and personnel issues


Ability to:

  •   provide supervision and training to personnel

  •   effectively and tactfully communicate in both oral and written forms

  •   prepare written staff reports and training bulletins

  •   prepare oral reports; make effective presentations to department personnel, City Council, and

    community organizations

  •   prepare budget estimates and control expenditures

  •   represent the Fire Department with high standards of ethics, professionalism, and dedication

  •   focus on multiple tasks simultaneously

  •   respond to negative feedback appropriately

  •   drive Fire Department vehicles and maintain safe driving record

  •   establish and maintain effective work relationships with those contacted in the performance of

    required duties

  •   assume role of acting Division Chief

  •   think clearly and act decisively under stressful conditions

  •   sit at a desk and in meetings and training for long periods of time

  •   stoop and bend; twist; reach above and below shoulder level

  •   push and pull; balance on ladders

  •   climb ground and aerial ladders

  •   work long hours, at all hours, under physical and mental pressures in hazardous conditions, in

    inclement weather and during emergency response and disaster situations

  •   stand for long periods of time

  •   wear self-contained breathing apparatus

  •   hear alarms and sirens

  •   distinguish red, yellow, and blue flashing lights

  •   wear firefighting gear weighing 50-60 lbs.

  •   smell to detect odors such as alcohol, smoke, gases, etc.

  •   hear effectively and communicate in both emergency and non-emergency situations

  •   work in various environments subject to heat, cold, inclement weather, etc.

  •   walk to perform assigned duties; walk on uneven surfaces; crawl and run

  •   lift equipment weighing 50 lbs.

  •   maintain good physical condition

  •   effectively use radios to communicate

  •   read, speak and write English; Spanish speaker is highly desirable


Physical requirements described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.

  •   must meet minimum medical requirement defined in NFPA Standard 1582

  •   must demonstrate physical strength, endurance and agility as defined by NFPA Standard 1582

    and as applied to the position

  •   must maintain physical fitness according to Departmental Standards

  •   must sign non-tobacco use agreement


Any combination of training and experience, which would provide the required knowledge and abilities, is qualifying. A typical way to obtain the knowledge and abilities is:


Associate Degree from a properly accredited institution is required before being permanently assigned to the position. A BS/BA degree from a properly accredited institution in Fire Protection Technology or other related field is highly desirable.

Must complete the following coursework prior to permanent appointment:

  •   ICS-400: Advanced Incident Command System

  •   NIMS I-800

  •   CSTI Hazardous Material On Scene Incident Commander

  •   CSFM Fire Chief Officer/Chief Officer

  •   Strike Team Leader S-330 or equivalent

  •   All Risk Safety Officer S-404 or equivalent


Broad and extensive experience in firefighting, fire prevention and administrative duties is required. Must have at least seven years of full-time firefighting experience and three of those years at the Fire Captain level or higher.


  •   A valid Class C California with Fire Fighter endorsement Driver’s license and a safe driving record and/or equivalent per the Department of Motor Vehicles to operate Fire Apparatus.

  •   Public Safety First Aid and CPR certification, a valid EMT certification is desirable.

  •   Must meet all employment standards for Fire Captain

  •   Must complete all required items in Watsonville Fire Department Battalion Chief Task book prior

    to permanent appointment. Entire task book must be completed prior to achieving permanent


  •   Meet current California State Fire Marshal Office (CSFM) certification of Fire Chief Officer and/or

    Chief Officer prior to achieving permanent status.

  •   Must complete any additional required CSFM Courses or accredited college courses during

    probationary time period on own time through the City’s Tuition Reimbursement program, if available.


Applications must be submitted online or mailed to the Human Resources Department located at 275 Main Street, Suite 400, Watsonville, CA 95076, by the filing deadline. No postmarks accepted. To apply online visit the City’s website at All candidates will receive written notification after applications have been screened for requirement compliance. Assessments will be held on Thursday, July 30, 2020. No study materials required.


The position benefits include vacation, sick leave, and holidays. The City offers Public Employees Retirement System benefits. Employees shall pay the full employee share of CalPERS contribution.

The candidate selected will be appointed for a 12-month probationary period. Names of successful candidates who do not receive a job offer will be placed on an employment list which normally remains effective for one year. The Human Resources Department may abolish an Employment List at any time the needs of the City so require. The position is represented by the Management bargaining unit.

Prior to appointment to the position of Battalion Fire Chief, a medical examination, background and Department of Justice LiveScan fingerprinting will be required.

The City of Watsonville is an Equal Opportunity Employer and encourages workplace diversity. The City of Watsonville is committed to compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act by including people with disabilities in all of its programs and activities.



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