Quebec’s provincial forest fighting agency SOPFEU is in recruiting mode in preparation for the 2022 fire season. While the closest base to the Pontiac region is in Maniwaki, communications advisor Melanie Morin said that they currently have employees from certain areas of the Pontiac. The base is located just south of Maniwaki proper on Hwy. 105, making it roughly an hour’s drive from Otter Lake.
In a press release, the organization calls forest firefighting a unique and rewarding job, which could take employees across the province or even the country. Morin said that the minimum requirement for this area is what’s known as a professional diploma (DEP) in some area of study related to forestry/wildlife management or the outdoors. She said it was critical for applicants to be both physically fit and comfortable in wilderness.
She added that since much of their work takes place in areas only accessible by flying, being comfortable in small aircraft is also essential. Generally forest firefighters work 10 days on, four days off and are at the station from 8 to 5. When sent to a location, SOPFEU will supply them with food and lodging.
The application period for this year closes on January 16.
More information on SOPFEU’s recruitment process is available here.
The full interview with Morin is available here.