There are two new requirements when recruiting Coastguard Rescue Officers. As of this year; the Medical and the CRB (Criminal Record Bureau) Check have been introduced.
Given the work can at times be intense, everyone needs to be physically fit – no laughing now – you don’t have to be Arnold Schwarzenegger, but capable of carrying out the tasks required. We have all shapes and sizes in the team, some who are better suited to carrying the heavy kit, and those racing snakes that can cover the ground quicker. The medical is there to ensure anyone who would not be able to undertake the work without hurting themselves i.e. those with back problems, heart problems or other underlying health problems are filtered out. It sounds a bit harsh, but it is necessary given that the work can be quiet physical at times.
The CRB check is a bit official but it is there to protect the team members and casualties. Often we find ourselves working with vulnerable adults or children; or with people who are distressed and agitated. The check ensures that everyone within the team has no criminal convictions or cautions that might demonstrate the person was unfit to undertake work with these people. The enhanced CRB check itself is very rigorous, and will disclose everything, and that's absolutely everything, but there’s nothing to fear if you’ve got a clean slate.
Once these are completed to the Station Officer and Sector Manager’s satisfaction you’re in the team.