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  • Saudi Arabia FF Jobs...

    As posted in firehouse.com, there are FF jobs in Saudi currently available. For those who might be interested, let me fill you in on some things before you apply:

    1. Your salary is tax-free, but you do pay Social Security. If you quit your job and return to the US, you have to pay taxes on your wages unless you have been outside of the US for more than 330 days.

    2. There will be NO alcohol or pornagraphy
    allowed.

    3. They take your passport from you at the airport upon arrival, you leave ONLY and IF they want you to.

    4. I had a friend who was a Fire Captain there. On his day off an alarm came in to the station. His crew decided not to respond. When he came in the next shift, he was punished because of it!

    5. Various contractors offer various contracts to firefighters. You may or maynot have housing provided, or be paid extra to find your own place. If you quit, you may have to pay your own airfare back to the US, or the cost to ship your stuff back.

    Just a few things to think about...

  • #2
    Originally posted by devildog4:

    2. There will be NO alcohol or pornagraphy
    allowed.


    AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!



    Ohh Rah

    [ 11-05-2001: Message edited by: Mike DeVuono ]
    Mike DeVuono
    FF/EMT

    "There are few atheists inside a burning building."

    These are my opinions and not those of my department.

    Comment


    • #3
      I highly doubt anyones gonna wanna go over there and fight fires..since after all what just happened... I find it funny they ask us for help after what just happened. I know its not in the same country but its still in the middle east and the tensions are high in that area.... I wonder how many people are actually gonna apply??
      Andrew
      Firefighter/EMT
      New Jersey

      Comment


      • #4
        There are many 'service companies' that operate overseas. Especially in Saudi Arabia -- they have too much oil $$$$ - they don't know what to do with it all....
        It is not uncommon for them to hire foreigners to come into the country and operate the oil fields- and train their military.

        As for what was mentioned about them having you surender your passport -- that is illegal, and violates just about every international treaty. I had the pleasure of working with the State Department, while stationed overseas with the Marine Corps at two of our nations embassies. (Pretoria, South Africa, and Damascus, Syria)

        If an individual were to lose - or be forced to surrender their passport (which is illegal) - then all they would have to do is go to the nearest embassy or consulate- and the consular officer their would issue the person a new passport.

        The civillian passport that I now maintain was issued to me by the American Embassy in Pretoria, South Africa - through the American Consulate in Johannesburg, South Africa.

        Trust me -- many a dark evening - I was the Marine on duty at the Embassy when a tired, angry, confused American citizen came in asking for help.

        [ 11-06-2001: Message edited by: FF McDonald ]
        Marc

        "In Omnia Paratus"

        Member - IACOJ
        "Got Crust?"

        -- The opinions presented here are my own; and are not those of any organization that I belong to, or work for.

        Comment


        • #5
          Quick history - did the Saud tour as a Lt and a Capt at King Abdulaziz Airport FD (Jeddah) - have an extensive amount of info on doing the job if someone is really thinking about it. Now - in responses:


          Devildog: 2. There will be NO alcohol or pornagraphy allowed.
          -- ---Yeah right - you must hot have spent time with the Brits there.

          . They take your passport from you at the airport upon arrival, you leave ONLY and IF they want you to.
          --- answered by McDonald (we did the same thing).

          4. I had a friend who was a Fire Captain there. On his day off an alarm came in to the station. His crew decided not to respond. When he came in the next shift, he was punished because of it!
          -- I am VERY curious which agency he worked for and what Nationality his crew was..reason: Yes the Muslim TCNs would pray daily while on shift - but even then the fire response would eventually be filled.

          It sounds like you had some bad experiences with contractors - I saw the Brits and Aussies get screwed on what you listed but I never saw one American shorted on housing, etc.

          Drop me a line - I am curious where you were...

          Steve

          Comment


          • #6
            [QUOTE]Originally posted by Engine58:
            I highly doubt anyones gonna wanna go over there and fight fires..since after all what just happened... I find it funny they ask us for help after what just happened.

            The Saudis aren't asking us for help. This job is with a U.S. company that has a contract with the Departemnt of Defense. You'll be protecting U.S., Saudi, British and French assets.

            skuehl34 has the best information on this. I was there in the military. We weren't allowed to go to the British Compound so the no alcohol thing sucked. Damn Mattawah.

            Comment


            • #7
              Ok, here it goes -

              1. Saudi Arabia usually is in excess of 120 degrees in the summer. Not fun to fight fire in.
              2. There equipment is very poorly maintained. They have very substandard PPE, and are unequipped to handle many domestic emergencies.
              3. About 99% of the entire country is third world. The wealthy people don't even live there.
              4. Housing is incredibly substandard also. Hope you like large rats, stray animals with various diseases,(saudi does not require it's animals to be vaccinated), and sand fleas, scorpions, and camel spiders.
              5. Most native Saudi's don't like Americans. Bet you didn't know that.

              Basically, I would do anything to encourage somebody not to take a job over there. You would regret it tenfold.
              Trust me, I've been there three times. (USAF)
              Mike

              Comment


              • #8
                They offered me a Driver/Operator slot there. Had to turn them down, too big a pay cut, even with the tax free (less Social Security).

                I wish them luck in filling the spots.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Jollyroger,

                  What is this contractor paying? When I was there in '92 the Chief was making over $100,000. I'm not sure about the other positions.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I just filled out their questionare on the job openings. I did it just to see what it would be like and to find out more info like pay rate, time off, working conditions, etc. Sounds like it is no party, that's for sure.

                    I've heard before that native Saudi's don't like Americans. Not sure if that would be pleasureable to work with. I thought it might be cool for a single guy like me to go and see the world but now I'm not sure. I really don't want to work at a place where you gotta keep looking over your shoulder to see who is going to shoot you in the back. Things sound pretty tense over there right now.

                    Thanks for the information and insight!

                    Keep your head down and your powder dry!
                    ________________
                    Lt.Jason Knecht
                    Altoona Fire Rescue
                    Altoona, WI
                    Jason Knecht
                    Firefighter/EMT
                    Township Fire Dept., Inc.
                    Eau Claire, WI

                    IACOJ - Director of Cheese and Whine
                    http://www.cheddarvision.tv/
                    EAT CHEESE OR DIE!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      $31k to start, add travel expenses at $3600, overtime (figure about a 1/4 of your salary) that brings it to 39 or 40k.

                      Thanks but no thanks. Best of luck to whomever goes.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        OK - lets go with some good news. The tour helped me a great deal - aside from the negatives - both personally and professionally. I completely understand the negatives from the military points of view listed here - when I finally did get into the consulate after being there for awhile - I truly felt sorry for those Marines. I'll save that for later - also envied that they got to see and live things the American way once inside those walls.

                        The heat is bearable because you are always in an ACd area - if not you usually aren't out for long. The nights are awesome. Jeddah is the West Coast of KSA like West Coast is here in US. More beaches, more partying, more women, LOTS of women from all over the world, more freedoms, less matawah (religous police) and so on. Traveling and the history are great - some cool ruins and incredible deals on antiques and gold.

                        The food is good - I would love to be able to find an authentic shwarma here in the US - if you go there find the best reputed street vendor of shwarmas and you'll be hooked.

                        Salaries - commensurate with Nationality and experience and rank. Chiefs will make upwards of 50-60K working for the Airports and much more for the American compunds. Same with Captains and up - D/Os, Lts and FFs are not allowed to be of first world countries at the Airports - so if you are applying for a DO or Capt it SHOULD be for a compound. Much more info on that....

                        The experience is well worth it if you are looking to acquire something in your background that hardly anyone else has when you are trying to get hired here - every chief's interview I had after I came back, that trip was the hot topic. It is what I feel got me hired finally. If you can handle the year out of your life for seeing the sites and living the lie (save that for a personal email) do it...

                        As far as the
                        I really don't want to work at a place where you gotta keep looking over your shoulder to see who is going to shoot you in the back
                        -- I never once feared for my safety due to violence. There were plenty of cops around with guns and assorted military personnel - as far as the Sauds - you learn to ignore them as they do you..If you end up working on a an American compound - that will be the least of your worries...

                        I'll cut it short at that - BTW - I was there when the raids and battles were going on in Mog - never spilled over to Jeddah towards Americans that I saw - I know now is more potent - but the American military is in every city there - and there is always a group of Marines not far away. And trust me - the fire service is not a target to the "terrorists" over there - we are considered scum and unimportant.

                        Steve

                        [ 11-06-2001: Message edited by: skuehl34 ]

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Oh, yeah, and don't forget...if you're a female firefighter, don't bother applying.

                          Those nutty old friendly neihborhood Saudis frown on women actually *working*.
                          "Let's roll." - Todd Beamer, one of a group of American soldiers who handed the terrorists their first defeat.

                          Joe Black

                          The opinions expressed are mine and mine alone (but you can borrow them )and may not reflect those of any organization with which I am associated (but then again, they just may not be thinking clearly).

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I forgot another story from Saudi...

                            My old Chief worked there for a number of years in the mid-80's putting together the Fire Service system directly for the Prince.
                            He related one incident where he was involved in an accident while riding in a taxi. The taxi driver was clearly not at fault, they got hit by another vehicle. But, he had to run and get out of there, the Saudi's would have considered him "guilty" just because he was the one who hired the taxi! Strange legal system I think?!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Ok, here is a quick question.

                              I'm a female, would I have to wear a veil while fighting a fire or would my mask and nomex count as body covering?
                              Bless all of our Fallen Brothers and Sisters. You will not be forgotten

                              Comment

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