CPAT Testing Facility
Candidate Physical Ability Test & Ladder Climb
You must be at least 18 years of age at time of first scheduled session. You also must provide government-issued Drivers License or State I.D. card.
Please take time to watch the CPAT video below before coming to your Orientation & Practice or test day. You will see the video again as part of Orientation.
Throughout all events, the candidate "You" must wear long pants and footwear with no open heel or toe. Watches and loose or restrictive jewelry are not permitted. We will provide a hard hat with chin strap and work gloves for the test.
As initially designed and developed, the CPAT provided for voluntary orientation sessions intended to familiarize candidates with the test apparatus and requirements. However, increased orientation and practice opportunities significantly improve the ability of all candidates to complete the CPAT within the “cut off” time of 10 minutes and 20 seconds. Therefore, it is now mandatory that all candidates must be given the opportunity to attend at least two (2) orientation sessions, with the first session taking place at least eight (8) weeks prior to the actual test date. During the sessions, candidates will receive “hands on” familiarity with the actual CPAT apparatus. Also during the orientation sessions, Certified Peer Fitness Trainers, fitness professionals, and/or CPAT-trained fire fighters (proctors)shall familiarize all candidates with each task and apparatus, and shall advise all candidates concerning specific conditioning regimens and techniques to help them prepare for the CPAT
Fire departments utilizing the CPAT shall also ensure that all candidates have full and equal opportunity to perform at least two (2) timed practice runs, using actual CPAT apparatus and completing the entire course. These mandatory practice sessions shall occur within thirty (30) days of the official test date. Again, Certified Peer Fitness Trainers, fitness professionals and/or CPAT-trained fire fighters (proctors) shall help the candidates understand the test elements and how they can improve their performance and conditioning.
In order to reduce the burden on a department’s resources, it is permissible for a candidate to pass the CPAT during either of the practice sessions, provided that the department has fully staffed and administered the test as they would on the official test day. However, a candidate who passes the CPAT during a practice session shall not be rank ordered ahead of any candidate who requires both practice sessions and the official test to pass the CPAT
Candidate Physical Ability Test Guide
This candidate physical ability test (CPAT) consists of eight separate events. The CPAT is a sequence of events requiring you to progress along a predetermined path from event to event in a continuous manner. This test was developed to allow fire departments to obtain pools of trainable candidates who are physically able to perform essential job tasks at fire scenes. This is a pass/fail test based on a validated maximum total time of 10 minutes and 20 seconds.
In these events, you wear a 50-pound (22.68-kg) vest to simulate the weight of self contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) and fire fighter protective clothing. An additional 25 pounds (11.34 kg), using two 12.5-pound (5.67-kg) weights that simulate a high-rise pack (hose bundle), is added to your shoulders for the stair climb event. Throughout all events, you must wear long pants, a hard hat with chin strap, work gloves and footwear with no open heel or toe. Watches and loose or restrictive jewelry are not permitted. All props were designed to obtain the necessary information regarding your physical ability. The tools and equipment were chosen to provide the highest level of consistency, safety and validity in measuring your physical abilities. A schematic drawing of the CPAT is included in this orientation material; however, the course layout may vary in order to conform to the fire department's test area. The events and distances between events are always the same. The events are placed in a sequence that best simulates fire scene events while allowing an 85-foot walk between events. To ensure the highest level of safety and to prevent exhaustion, no running is allowed between events. This walk allows you approximately 20 seconds to recover and regroup before each event. To ensure scoring accuracy by eliminating timer failure, two stopwatches are used to time the CPAT. One stopwatch is designated as the official test time stopwatch, the second is the backup stopwatch. If mechanical failure occurs, the time on the backup stopwatch is used. The stopwatches are set to the pass/fail time and count down from 10 minutes and 20 seconds. If time elapses prior to the completion of the test, the test is concluded and you fail the test.