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Fire Captain, ARFF (Air Rescue Firefighting)

Job ID: 36782
Department: Aviation
Location: JFK Airport


The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey (PANYNJ) conceives, builds, operates, and maintains infrastructure critical to the New York/New Jersey region’s trade and transportation network. These facilities include America’s busiest airport system, marine terminals and ports, the PATH rail transit system, six tunnels and bridges between New York and New Jersey, the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Manhattan, and the World Trade Center.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey seeks highly skilled and experienced professionals to fill the position(s) of Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting (ARFF), Captain in its Aviation Department that operates John F. Kennedy International Airport.


Reporting to the Commanding Deputy Fire Chief, Aircraft Rescue & Fire Firefighting, the candidates selected will exercise day-to-day oversight of distinct, geographically organized ARFF unit functions.

These individuals will be expected to serve under Unified Command during emergencies; meet Part 139 ARFF requirements in accordance with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Airport Certification Standards and other federal, state and local laws; assist in operating the units in an effective and cost-efficient manner; develop strong interagency and private-sector partnerships for the purpose of achieving a maximally efficient aircraft firefighting structure; and command, motivate, inspire, and maintain proper order and discipline among subordinates.

 Major responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  • Ability to act in a DUTY capacity in order to respond to emergency calls;
  • Supervising day-to-day ARFF functions, developing staff to a high degree of competence, and overseeing the assignment of subordinates;
  • Enforcing discipline, good order, and the highest standards of personal and unit probity;
  • Monitoring and evaluating the efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery methods, procedures, techniques, and equipment utilized in the conduct of all activities and making recommendations to eliminate inadequacies or improving operations, service and staffing levels, while promoting change management to ensure successful completion;
  • Analyzing problems, identifying solutions and implementing recommendations in support of Aviation Department goals, policies and procedures;
  • Supervising staff by clearly defining expectations and assignments, providing clear orders and instructions, maintaining approachability and listening to others, showing concern for others, exhibiting flexibility, decisiveness and calm demeanor in high-pressure situations and contingencies, motivating others and otherwise providing effective leadership;
  • Develop programs and procedures to ensure best practices and to maintain standards.
  • Coordinate the creation, maintenance, retrieval, protections, retention, and destruction of all records in accordance with the FAA policy and legal, financial, governmental, and historical requirements.
  • Working with ARFF Command staff, develop programs and standard operating procedures to ensure best practices and to maintain standards;
  • Participate in the implementation, and maintenance of policies and procedures for the recording, indexing, filing, and retrieving of active documents and the storage of inactive documents; assist in development and maintenance of the work plan for the records management function; 
  • Ensuring compliance with Part 139 ARFF requirements in accordance with FAA Certification Standards and other federal, state and local laws;
  • Ensuring the ARFF Cadre adheres to all legal, technical and administrative guidelines;
  • Ensuring compliance Part 139.321, Handling and Storage of Hazardous Materials and NFPA publications;
  • Assist the Commanding Deputy Fire Chief with designing and conducting emergency workshops and exercises to train staff and local emergency response personnel in cooperation with the ARFF Fire Chief and ARFF Training Deputy Fire Chief;
  • Making recommendations to the Commanding Deputy Fire Chief regarding hiring, training, discipline, and promotion of subordinates;
  • Make recommendations on annual budget requirements;
  • Maintaining technical and supervisory proficiency; organize and prioritize projects and multiple tasks in an effective and timely manner;
  • Attend and participate in professional group meetings, maintaining awareness of new trends in aircraft fire fighting and rescue, and incorporating new developments as appropriate.
  • Must be willing to work nonconventional work hours as assigned work shift, as well days off to attend training, inspections, emergencies etc.


Candidates must present the following qualifications to be considered eligible for this position:

A minimum of 60 college credits, from an accredited college or university with coursework in Fire Protection Administration, Public Administration, or related field; or Chief Officer Certification from accredited program; or a combination of education, training and job-related experience as stated below.

At least eight (8) years of full-time paid experience in structural firefighting, aircraft rescue firefighting (ARFF), or fire service management with a minimum of five (5) years supervisory experience as a Fire Officer in a State, municipal fire department, DoD ARFF operation or equivalent agency. Up to four years of job-related experience can be substituted for up to two years of the education requirement for this position; or, an equivalent combination of education and experience sufficient to successfully perform the essential duties of the job such as those listed above.


Ideal candidates will present the following profile:

  • Familiarization of Federal Aviation Administration airport certification standards / DoD ARFF operations relating to crash, fire and rescue operations and hazardous materials including Part 139 rules and regulations pertaining to ARFF;
  • Principles and practices of FAA records management;
  • Demonstrated skill in fire suppression, rescue and EMS;
  • Knowledge of firefighting and lifesaving techniques, methods and principles of aircraft rescue and structural firefighting, fire prevention and fire investigation;
  • Extensive experience in aircraft rescue and firefighting strongly preferred;
  • Knowledge of the operation and maintenance of crash, fire and rescue equipment and apparatus;
  • Preferred certifications may include one or more of the following: Firefighter 2, Airport Firefighter, First Responder, Operation and Incident Commander and/or Fire Officer 3, ICS- 100, 200, 300, 400, 700 and 800; Fire Instructor 2 and Fire Inspector 2.
  • Demonstrated leadership and administrative ability with extensive knowledge of modern fire/rescue service management;
  • Demonstrated experience in a position that fulfills National Incident Management System (NIMS) functions;
  • An ability to effectively work with and manage individuals from diverse professional backgrounds;
  • Strong conflict resolution and decision making skills;
  • An ability to work constructively with local, state, and federal agencies; and
  • Knowledge of principles of supervision, training, and performance evaluation.

Compensation & Benefits

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey offers a competitive salary, an outstanding benefits package and a professional environment that supports development and recognizes achievement.

How To Apply

Interested candidates should apply to this job by clicking on the Apply Now button and submitting a combined cover letter and resume. The Port Authority of NY & NJ welcomes veteran and military spouse applications.

Only applicants under consideration will be contacted.

About The Port Authority

Founded in 1921, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey builds, operates, and maintains many of the most important transportation and trade infrastructure assets in the country. The agency's network of aviation, ground, rail, and seaport facilities is among the busiest in the country, supports more than 550,000 regional jobs, and generates more than $23 billion in annual wages and $80 billion in annual economic activity. The Port Authority also owns and manages the 16-acre World Trade Center site, where the 1,776-foot-tall One World Trade Center is now the tallest skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere.


The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey/Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH) is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

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