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HOW TO BECOME A FIREFIGHTER CONTIUNED

DAY-TO-DAY DUTIES OF A FIREFIGHTER

Listed below are the day-to-day duties that can be expected of a firefighter:

    • Initial Response to Incidents – tasks occurring between the receipt of an alarm and initial firefighting or emergency scene activities
    • Watch Duties – stands watch to receive incoming alarms and information, answers phones, and monitors access to the station house
    • On-Scene Communication – communicates at an emergency scene to insure appropriate coordination of apparatus and personnel
    • Driving – drives apparatus, (engine, truck, ambulance, etc.) to and from, and positions apparatus at, emergency scenes
    • Pump Operations – connects or hooks up apparatus to fire hydrants and operates pumps to supply water in appropriate pressure and volume – using couplings, hoses, spanner wrenches and other tools
    • Hose (and Extinguisher) Operations – stretches line or uses extinguisher to deliver water, foam, and other extinguishing agents to emergency scene
    • Mechanical Ladder Operations – stabilizes ladder trucks and elevates and operates aerial ladders in order to rescue victims, provide access for ventilation, operate master stream devices, etc.
    • Manual Ladder Operations – carries, raises, extends and climbs manual ladders to perform search, rescue and other operations
    • Forcible Entry – pries open, cuts or breaks down doors, or otherwise enters structures, vehicles, aircraft and other entrapments in order to search for and rescue victims and provide access to the emergency scene – using axes, halligan tools, hooks, rabbit tools, batter rams, sledge hammers, power saws and other tools
    • Ventilation – opens or breaks windows, chops or cuts holes in roofs, breaches walls or doors, and aims fog stream out of window or hangs fans in windows or doors to remove heat, smoke and/or gas from structures or entrapments
    • Search – searches assigned area in order to locate victims and to obtain further information about incident, following standards search procedures
    • Rescue – assists, hoists, carries or drags victims from emergency area by means of interior access (stairs, hallways, etc.) or, if necessary, by ladders, fire escapes, or other means of escape – using rescue harnesses, ropes, backboards and other equipment.  Extricates victims from vehicles, aircraft, cave-ins, collapsed buildings or other entrapments in order to save lives – using shovels, torches, drills, pry bars, saws, jacks jaws, air bags, and other equipment
    • Salvage – moves and covers furniture, appliances, merchandise and other property; covers holes in structures; stabilizes damaged structural components; and redirects or cleans up water in order to minimize damage – using plastic and canvas covers, ropes, staple guns, mops, squeegees, and other tools
    • Overhaul – opens up walls and ceilings, cuts or pulls up floors and moves or turns over debris, in order to check for hidden fires which could rekindle or spread – using hooks, axes, saws and pitchforks
    • Clean-Up/Pick-Up – picks up, cleans and returns equipment to vehicle and rolls or folds hose, so that the company can go back in service
    • Emergency Medical Care – performs thorough patient evaluation and intervenes with the appropriate medical care for persons requiring medical care and/or requesting assistance with medical care
    • Equipment Maintenance – checks, cleans, and maintains personal gear and equipment to ensure proper and safe operation
    • Apparatus Maintenance – checks, cleans and maintains apparatus to ensure proper and safe operation
    • Station Maintenance and Duties – checks, cleans, and maintains house facilities.  This includes the performance of routine housekeeping chores
    • Inspection of Buildings and Fire Protection Devices - inspects building for fire prevention/hazardous materials code violations or hazards on a periodic basis or during the course of their activities.  Inspects alarms, hydrants, sprinkler systems, and standpipe systems for operational use.
    • Public Relations - engages in activities that have an impact on the department’s image in the community.  Such activities include providing information to the media, providing assistance and support to civilians seeking help or information, and giving presentations to community groups and other members of the public.
    • Training and Professional Development - participates in training drills and classes to enhance job-related skills and abilities.  Reads internal memos and bulletins to keep apprised of new developments in departmental operations and procedures.  Attends lectures, seminars, courses, etc., and reads external documents (e.g., professional trade publications) to remain current in the fire service.

CHARACTERISTICS OF A SUCCESSFUL FIREFIGHTER

  • maintain effective working relationships with superiors and subordinates
  • get along with others
  • stay calm; handle stress
  • use common sense
  • listen to others
  • be flexible
  • be self-motivated
  • be decisive
  • counsel, support and be empathic toward others
  • work under stressful conditions
  • maintain emotional control
  • do repetitive tasks
  • work with little or no supervision
  • take charge when needed
  • determine priorities
  • have a good sense of humor
  • accept constructive criticism from others
  • be resourceful
  • handle critical decision-making under life-threatening conditions
  • perform complex tasks under life-threatening conditions
  • work under tight time frames
  • deal with critically injured/ill people
  • perform tasks requiring log periods of intense concentration
  • perform under unpleasant circumstances or in traumatic situations
  • work as a team member
  • maintain a positive attitude
  • enthusiasm
  • honesty
  • initiative
  • innovativeness
  • judgment and common sense
  • stability
  • willingness to be patient, non-judgmental and accepting of other people
  • desire to serve and help people regardless of who they are, where they are and what their beliefs are
  • demonstrate a genuine caring attitude toward all people
  • must have an awareness and understanding of differences between different cultures
  • have an optimistic attitude and believe that the best outcome will occur in emergency situations
  • driven by strong values and ethics along with an awareness to act upon those values and ethics
  • willing to put the best interests of the organization above personal interests or differences
  • be able to function as a member of a team

 

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Home

Free Newsletter sign up

 Past FireEMT Newsletters

Contact us

How To Become a Fireman

How to become an EMT

Written Exam Packages

Bonus Packages

Capt Bob’s Prep Packages

How To Become a Paramedic

Top 150 Fire Departments

Locating Firefighter Examinations

Top Scoring Test-taking Strategies

Capt Bob’s Oral Interview Strategies

Top Scoring Physical Agility Strategies

Resumes

Career Articles

Questions and Answers

Encyclopedia of Firefighter Examinations

Reading Comprehension & Mathematics Preparation

Psychological Examination Preparation

Capt Bob’s Oral Interview Preparation

Ultimate Firefighter Examination Prep Package

Gold Bonus Prep Package

Silver Bonus Prep Package

Final Examination Preparation

Understanding Oral Information Exam Preparation

Capt Bob’s Becoming a Firefighter – The Complete Guide to Your Badge

Testimonials

Promotional Strategies

In-Basket Products

Firefighting Pictures

Click Here To Learn How To Become A Paramedic