Firefighters do many things:

  • Fight fires
  • Perform rescue work
  • Educate about fire prevention
  • Administer first aid
  • Respond to emergency hazardous material calls
  • Maintain firefighting equipment, vehicles, and stations
  • Clean up after fires
  • Pre-planning

Firefighters respond to more than fires. 38 percent of fire department responses are to emergency medical calls.

Living Quarters

Firefighters live and work together closely. They are responsible for housekeeping, cooking, cleaning, and vehicle maintenance at the fire station. Firefighters spend a lot of time inspecting, cleaning, and maintaining gear and equipment.

Teamwork

Teamwork is critical in a firefighter’s career:

  • Sharing routine tasks at the fire station
  • Providing back-up at the scene of an emergency
  • Depending on each other during emergency calls

Hours

Firefighting is not a regular day-job. It is a 24/7 public service. Firefighters work:

  • Weekends and holidays
  • Alternating day/night schedules
  • An average of 42 hours per week for four weeks at a time

Hazards

A firefighter works under emergency conditions. The situations often involve a lot of risk.

Discipline

The fire service is a paramilitary organization. Firefighters must follow Officers’ orders and adhere to rules and regulations. Firefighters need strong control over their behaviour.

Volunteering

The fire service is significantly involved in the community. Firefighters perform volunteer work in the community.