What Does it Take to Be a Firefighter?
Firefighter is an occupation that requires a lot of preparation, training and dedication. However, it can be rewarding and fulfilling to see a job well done.
The duties of a firefighter are to fight and extinguish any fires in the community. They also work to educate people about fire safety and prevent future fires. They are also able to provide emergency medical services.
A firefighter may have to travel long distances to respond to a fire, sometimes even across the country. This means they need to be prepared to endure a variety of conditions, including hot temperatures, cold weather, high altitudes and enclosed spaces filled with smoke.
They also need to be fit as they are often required to carry heavy equipment and breathing apparatus, which can be difficult. They also need to be calm and have patience in challenging situations.
Firefighters often work in extreme temperatures and humidity, and they are exposed to all kinds of dangers such as falling or collapsing buildings, explosions and gases. They need to be highly organized and be able to handle stressful situations in a professional manner.
Some of the responsibilities of a firefighter include assessing hazards in buildings and inspecting them for compliance with fire codes, such as making sure fire alarms are working and sprinkler systems are functioning properly. They also make sure hydrants are available and that water is flowing during emergencies.
Many firefighters are also trained to investigate a fire and determine the cause of it, such as whether arson was involved or negligence led to the fire. They also act as rescuers in the event of natural disasters such as tornadoes, tsunamis and earthquakes.
The qualifications for becoming a firefighter vary by state and province, but most states require firefighters to have at least a bachelor’s degree. Some states also require specialized training in fire science or emergency medicine.
A firefighter must be physically fit as they are typically required to carry large equipment and breathing apparatus on their backs. They are frequently required to climb and descend steep ladders, operate axes, and drive fire trucks.
They are also required to maintain high standards of cleanliness as they often work in crowded and dirty environments. They also need to be courteous and helpful to all people they come in contact with, including other firefighters and members of the public.
Those who work in the field are known for their commitment to their job, putting in 24-hour shifts and responding to emergencies at all times of the day and night. They also clean and service their trucks, speak to groups about fire safety, participate in physical fitness training and have an active role in the community by assisting with charitable events.
Firefighters are expected to continue their education and training throughout their career, so it is possible to move up the ranks. This can result in higher wages and responsibilities, which are usually pegged to the number of years you have been in the career and continuing to learn and grow on your own.