The Basics of Firefighter Training
This site was voted:
We greatly depend on our firefighters in the event of an emergency (see here for some of the biggest fires ever) - firefighters have an extremely demanding job. In order to become a firefighter, hopeful recruits must endure rigorous training, obtain a specialized and scientific education and prove their physical endurance in real life settings. Firefighter training is intense and difficult; however, it ultimately leads to one of the most rewarding jobs out there.
I cut out to be Firefighter?
Experts recommend that aspiring candidates give serious thought to the potential risks and physical demands associated with the job before beginning the training process. It is a lengthy course and can be an expensive one. Only those with serious intent to follow through will make it.
Potential recruits need to upgrade several skills that are beyond the immediate scope of firefighting. Community involvement is often required for a firefighter to be offered a position. Upgrading your education to include a second language and improve math and science levels will help solidify the dream. Volunteering in your local area is also a great idea.
Outside of the school classroom, additional learning and training will be required prior to physical testing and stepping into a firefighter’s uniform. Be sure to have up-to-date CPR and Life Guard training certification. Knowing the basics of heavy equipment operation is a plus for many municipalities, and knowledge in the handling of hazardous material is often a requirement.
Good vision is an important factor to consider. As a general rule, firefighters must have a minimum vision level of 20/30, which must be an uncorrected level of vision. If you currently wear glasses or contacts, you may want to examine the possibility of laser vision correction.
the Firefighter Training Program
An initial interview is the first stage of application. Similar to any job interview, it is conducted face to face and will either make or break your chances with that particular fire department. Be prepared. Hopefully, prior to your interview, you will have had many discussions with your mentor and hitched a few rides on actual fire trucks. Dress well and be professional at all times. Firefighting is a very serious position; hence, acting overly familiar and aloof at this stage will not help your chances.
Although you would undoubtedly welcome information on available positions, expected firefighter salary and hours of work, the department may or may not provide you with such information during the interview. They may withhold those particular details until (and if) you move farther along in the process.
As a general rule, you can count on working long shifts as a firefighter with a certain amount of days on and a certain amount of days off. You will be required to work holidays and can anticipate a salary of around $40,000 once you gain experience in the department.
After the interview, you can expect a written skills test, pertaining to the training and education that you upgraded before applying. Lastly, you will need to undergo the physical test, which will be harsh and demanding, as the job often is.
Once both of these tests have been passed, you will enter the department’s training or apprentice program, which may be a close repeat of what you previously learned in the firefighter training program. There will be a probationary period of employment that generally lasts from 3 to 6 months before you become a full-fledged firefighter.
Beyond the monetary benefits of this job, there are many intangible rewards. For those who successfully make it through the training, it will be a career that enriches their lives as they protect the lives of others.