Florida Highway Patrol Recruitment

Are you looking for a job that's not nine to five, that's exciting, involves travel and can sometimes be a bit dangerous? The Florida Highway Patrol is looking for a few good men and women to fill ranks close to 200 jobs in all.

Florida's Deferred Retirement Option Program, or DROP, was a wonderful way to retire for many state employees. The only problem is so many took advantage that many agencies have been hit hard, but none harder than the Highway Patrol.

LT John Bagnardi, spokesperson for the Florida Highway Patrol, says, "Our first wave was June 2001 and we lost 88 people in one day and that's going to be a continuing process probably over the next four to five years where we're going to be losing large numbers of senior officers."

And replacing those senior officers has become increasingly difficult.

The Florida Highway Patrol says the recruitment issues come from two main problems: one of course being pay the second being background checks. Starting pay for troopers is around $32,000 a year.

For applicant Eric Buchanan a job with the Highway Patrol is not about the money.

Eric Buchanan, FHP applicant, "A trooper, that's professionalism, that's top of the line law enforcement, that's the way I look at it, that's why I want to be a trooper, that's top of the law."

According to Bagnardi, being short-staffed has been tough and many troopers are pulling a good bit of overtime.

Bagnardi says, "We're teetering, but we're doing the best we can for now and filling those vacancies will help drastically."

The training for the new trooper takes about six months. Go to our website wctv6.com there's a link to find out more information.

In the past that female troopers are in high demand. Females and minorities are needed, but if you're qualified and you meet their standards. They want you.

The Georgia Highway Patrol said they're currently in a hiring freeze.