The following is a brief outline of the firefighting industry and process of gaining employment
Firefighters are rescuers which are extensively trained to put out and contain hazardous fires that threaten civilian populations and property. People who hold firefighter jobs are also extensively trained to rescue people from car accidents, collapsed and burning buildings and other such situations. The increasing complexity of modern industrialized life with an increase in the scale of hazards has stimulated both advances in firefighting technology and a broadening of the firefighter-rescuer's training and awareness.
There are several types of firefighters within the industry, all with there specialties and services that they use to undertake the day to day duties of a firefighter. They can be specially trained to operate machinery, attack bush fires, emergency site communication and many more.
Not all firefighters are paid for their services in some countries there are volunteer firefighters and paid firefighters who do it as their full time job.
The difference between the two is that a volunteer firefighter will be on call at certain times throughout the year, this means that the firefighter will receive notification of an emergency through an alarm or pager and then immediately proceed to the station. They then equip themselves and attend the emergency.
Being a paid firefighter means that you spend your time at the fire station with fellow officers waiting for an emergency call out, the amount of time spent at the station varies but is generally around 20 hours at a time, during this time you are able to sleep, use entertainment facilities or attend to station housekeeping all the while keeping prepared for your next call out.
An alternative to being a firefighter who extinguishes the fire you can be trained as an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). An EMT works along the side of a firefighter by giving emergency medical services to the firefighters or the victims. An EMT will also have extensive training in search and rescue as some victims need to be assessed on the safest way for them to be evacuated from an emergency site.
There are a number of benefits of working in a firefighter job that make the industry so appealing, some of these are earning excellent salaries, establishing long lasting friendships with fellow firefighters, being well looked after with quality food, having excellent sleeping and living conditions and an excellent work schedule that allows for a great deal of time at home. Also for the dedicated and focused firefighters there is excellent opportunities for promotion and career advancement within the industry,
Once you have decided that a firefighting career is something you want to do and feel you can live up to the challenge there are a number issues to consider:
Salaries (dependent on location)
Courses / qualifications you need to undertake or have before you can apply
Minimum Physical Requirements
Being a firefighter with a family