How to Become a Firefighter
A firefighter is a rescuer who is trained in handling hazardous materials and extinguishing building fires. They are also responsible for evacuating people and animals during emergency situations. The job is physically and emotionally demanding. Firefighters are trained to respond quickly and efficiently, to analyze fire scenes, and to write detailed incident reports.
If you want to become a firefighter, you’ll need to apply to a vocational certification program or an associate’s or bachelor’s degree program. Applicants should be at least 18 years old and able to meet the physical fitness standards of the profession. Additionally, they should be able to complete the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification, which allows them to provide first aid.
In addition, applicants should be familiar with the use of various types of firefighting equipment. For example, firefighters must know how to use pump operators, aerial ladders, and hose operators. Some firefighters specialize in stabilizing victims when they are brought out of a burning structure.
In addition to the skills necessary for the position, candidates should have a strong sense of public service. Firefighters often act as the first responders to a variety of emergency situations, and they are responsible for coordinating with local police departments. These individuals also monitor safety regulations for commercial and residential properties.
Firefighters work long hours and shifts. They usually start their shifts around 7 a.m. or 8 a.m. and are expected to work a minimum of eighteen hours in a row. Their shifts may include holidays and weekends. Many firefighters are also assigned to regional disaster zones, where they may work many more hours than usual.
To be a firefighter, you must undergo training at the fire department academy. This involves receiving hands-on training and being exposed to a wide range of subjects. You should also possess a strong desire to help others, and the capacity to be quick under pressure.
Firefighters are also required to maintain their own equipment. This includes their vehicles, water supplies, and hydrants. Furthermore, a firefighter must understand the rules of the road and be able to recognize signs of a vehicle crash. Often, firefighters are called to accidents on highways and other roads. During their shifts, they might also spend time inspecting a business or a school.
Depending on the company, a firefighter may also be required to receive specialized training in emergency medical treatment. Most firefighters are required to have at least an EMT certification.
Firefighters typically work a schedule of 24 hours a day on a 48-hour off schedule. They are expected to work at least nine to eleven total shifts each month.
During their shifts, firefighters are required to complete a comprehensive training program, which includes physical and mental fitness testing. They must be in excellent physical shape and have a high level of endurance. They are prone to post-traumatic stress disorder, which can lead to depression and poor sleep habits.
When applying to be a firefighter, be sure to include a detailed description of the working hours, the nature of the job, and the type of benefits offered. These can help to attract the best applicants for the position.