What Does A Municipal Firefighter Do (including Their Typical Day at Work)

Stan T.Career, Overview

Salary, Job Description, How To Become One, and Quiz

Municipal Firefighters

Municipal Firefighters control and extinguish municipal fires, protect life and property and conduct rescue efforts.

Salary
$56360
Becoming One
Medium
Education
No degree required
Job Satisfaction
Job Growth

Personality
Interest Match





Find a job you love and you will never work a day in your life.Confucius

What they do

Municipal Firefighters control and extinguish municipal fires, protect life and property and conduct rescue efforts.

  • Search burning buildings to locate fire victims.
  • Rescue victims from burning buildings, accident sites, and water hazards.
  • Administer first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation to injured persons.
  • Dress with equipment such as fire-resistant clothing and breathing apparatus.

Typical day

On a daily basis, Municipal Firefighters clean and maintain fire stations and fire fighting equipment and apparatus. They participate in physical training activities to maintain a high level of physical fitness.

A typical day for a Municipal Firefighter will also include:

  • Drive and operate fire-fighting vehicles and equipment.
  • Dress with equipment such as fire-resistant clothing and breathing apparatus.
  • Respond to fire alarms and other calls for assistance, such as automobile and industrial accidents.
  • Collaborate with police to respond to accidents, disasters, and arson investigation calls.
  • Assess fires and situations and report conditions to superiors to receive instructions, using two-way radios.

Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, Municipal Firefighters also participate in fire drills and demonstrations of fire fighting techniques. They may also participate in courses, seminars, and conferences, and study fire science literature, to learn firefighting techniques.

On a weekly to monthly basis, Municipal Firefighters lay hose lines and connect them to water supplies. They might also select and attach hose nozzles, depending on fire type, and direct streams of water or chemicals onto fires.

In addition, they collaborate with police to respond to accidents, disasters, and arson investigation calls.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them dress with equipment such as fire-resistant clothing and breathing apparatus.

To some Municipal Firefighters, it is also their responsibility to respond to fire alarms and other calls for assistance, such as automobile and industrial accidents.

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What is the job like

Job satisfaction

Very High

Is this job meaningful

Very High

83% said they were satisfied with their job and 88% said they found their job meaningful.


Being a firefighter is the best job I have ever had. I would rather be at the station than be at home, and I consider my crew literally my brothers. Look at the job going in as a high stress janitor… We wash trucks, work on gear, and clean the station all day, with adrenaline … Read More


Monterey Park Fire Department

My name is David Goetz. I have worked for the Monterey Park Fire Department for 15 years, the last five having been an Engineer within the department. My typical day Typical is something we don’t tend to have in the fire service. We can have planned days but it is always subject to immediate and … Read More


Pros

Suitable for people who like practical and hands-on work.

Suitable for people who want to work in a supportive work environment.

This career is perfect for people who love to work both indoors and outdoors.

It is not too difficult to get into this career. Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for this career.

Cons

Not suitable for people who like to follow routines.

Salary is below average.

Long working hours (More than 40 hours per week).

How much do they make

Average salary

$56360 per year

Average hourly wage

$27 per hour

Entry-level Municipal Firefighters with little to no experience can expect to make anywhere between $26,940 to $35,850 per year or $13 to $17 per hour.

Salary by experience Annual Hourly
Highest (Top 10%) $93,790 $45
Senior (Top 25%) $70,870 $34
Median $52,500 $25
Junior (Bottom 25%) $35,850 $17
No experience (Bottom 10%) $26,940 $13

This table shows the top 10 highest paying industries for Municipal Firefighters based on their average annual salary.

Salary by industry Annual Hourly
Spectator Sports $70360 $33.83
Aerospace Product and Parts Manufacturing $64060 $30.80
Ship and Boat Building $59130 $28.43
Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools $59000 $28.36
Architectural, Engineering, and Related Services $58840 $28.29
Facilities Support Services $58420 $28.08
Local Government $57490 $27.64
Support Activities for Air Transportation $55100 $26.49
Federal Executive Branch $54970 $26.43
State Government $54670 $26.28

View more salary by industries here.

Where can they work

Where can Municipal Firefighters work? Here is a table showing the top 10 largest employers of Municipal Firefighters including the average salary in that industry.

Employers Total Employed Annual Salary Hourly Wages
Local Government 277370 $57490 $27.64
Other Support Services 13720 $37020 $17.80
State Government 9310 $54670 $26.28
Federal Executive Branch 7660 $54970 $26.43
Other Ambulatory Health Care Services 700 $38780 $18.64
Investigation and Security Services 520 $40420 $19.43
Aerospace Product and Parts Manufacturing 320 $64060 $30.80
Facilities Support Services 160 $58420 $28.08
Scientific Research and Development Services 140 $50410 $24.24
Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools 110 $59000 $28.36

What is the work day like

Working hours

Less than 40 hours
30%

40 hours
6%

More than 40 hours
64%

Working schedule

72%

28%

0%

Email

How often do you use email in this job?

Once a week
27%

Every day
51%

Telephone

How often do you have telephone conversations in this job?

Once a week
27%

Every day
51%

Group discussions

How often do you have group discussions in this job?

Once a week
17%

Every day
83%

Public speaking

How often does this job require you to do public speaking?

Never
14%

Once a year
27%

Once a month
34%

Once a week
16%

Every day
9%

Level of competition

How much competitive pressure is in this job?

Not competitive at all
12%

Slightly competitive
2%

Moderately competitive
21%

Highly competitive
47%

Extremely competitive
18%

What is the work environment like

Office-style environment

Indoors in an environmentally controlled condition

Never
24%

Once a year or more
7%

Once a month or more
15%

Once a week or more
8%

Every day
46%

Warehouse-style environment

Indoors in a non-controlled environmental condition such as a warehouse

Never
22%

Once a year or more
4%

Once a month or more
11%

Once a week or more
22%

Every day
41%

Outdoors

Outdoors exposed to all weather conditions

Never
11%

Once a year or more
0%

Once a month or more
0%

Once a week or more
23%

Every day
67%

Outdoors – Under Cover

Outdoors but under cover (e.g. structure with roof but no walls)

Never
28%

Once a year or more
4%

Once a month or more
17%

Once a week or more
26%

Every day
24%

How to become one

Difficulty to become one

Medium
You will need previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience. Most careers in this difficulty category require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an Associate’s degree, and one or two years of on-the-job training. Similar careers include Travel Agents, Agricultural Technicians, Court Reports, and Medical Assistants.

Required level of education

What level of education do you need to perform the job?

Less than a High School Diploma
8%

High School Diploma or equivalent
32%

Post-Secondary Certificate
27%

Some College Courses
21%

Associate’s Degree or similar
8%

Bachelor’s Degree
1%

Post-Baccalaureate Certificate
0%

Master’s Degree
0%

Post-Master’s Certificate
0%

First Professional Degree
4%

Doctoral Degree
0%

Post-Doctoral Training
0%

Relevant majors

Wildland/Forest Firefighting and Investigation

A program focusing on the application of fire science, firefighting and investigation to the prevention, control and mitigation of wildland fires and the analysis of causes. Includes instruction in fire science and behavior, wildland environments, meteorology, wildland fire hydraulics and dynamics, water and chemical supply systems, wildland firefighting operations, airborne firefighting, firebreak engineering, communications systems, wildland arson, forensic procedures, wildland fire prevention, investigation techniques, case management and preparation.

Fire Prevention and Safety Technology

A program focusing on the application of fire science and technology to problems of reducing fire risk, limiting loss, supervising substance removal, conducting safety inspections and investigations, and advising on matters of safety procedures and fire prevention policy. Includes instruction in fire behavior, fire simulation, structural risk assessment, materials analysis, detection and suppression systems, smoke management, supply and evacuation, public education, legal aspects of fire prevention, and related research and communications methods.


Fire Science/Firefighting

A program focusing on the theory and practice of fires and fire-fighting. Includes instruction in fire chemistry and physics, combustible materials, computer science, building construction, fire codes and related laws, fire hydraulics, fire command, fire prevention/inspection, fire protection systems, fire suppression systems, fire/arson investigation, occupational safety, equipment operation, emergency medicine and communications.

Environmental/Natural Resources Law Enforcement and Protective Services

A program that prepares individuals to enforce natural resource and environmental protection regulations and laws; and to perform emergency duties to protect human life, property and natural resources, including fire prevention and control measures, and emergency and rescue procedures. Includes instruction in natural and physical sciences, natural resource management, outdoor field skills, firearms and outdoor equipment and vehicle operation, evidence collection and environmental sampling and monitoring, natural resource legislation, environmental compliance techniques, patrol procedures, investigation and report writing, interpersonal skills and crisis intervention, community liaison, public safety, public education, and public relations. Note: this program was re-instated after being deleted from CIP 2000; previously, it was coded as 03.0203.

Relevant work experience

How much related work experience do you need to get hired for the job?

None
34%

1 month
2%

1 to 3 months
0%

3 to 6 months
8%

6 months to 1 year
14%

1 to 2 years
15%

2 to 4 years
23%

4 to 6 years
0%

6 to 8 years
4%

8 to 10 years
0%

Over 10 years
0%

On The Job Training

How much on the job training do you need to perform the job?

None or short demonstration
9%

1 month
0%

1 to 3 months
1%

3 to 6 months
12%

6 months to 1 year
31%

1 to 2 years
24%

2 to 4 years
11%

4 to 10 years
0%

Over 10 years
12%

Should you become one

Best personality type for this career

The Builder

People with this personality type likes practical and hands-on work. They prefer working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery.

The Builder
100%

People with The Builder personality type likes practical and hands-on work. They prefer working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery.


The Thinker
33%

People with The Thinker personality likes to work with ideas that require an extensive amount of thinking. They prefer work that requires them to solve problems mentally.


The Artist
19%

People with The Artist personality likes to work with designs and patterns. They prefer activities that require self-expression and prefer work that can be done without following a clear set of rules.


The Helper
76%

People with The Helper personality type likes to work with people and in teams. They prefer work that allows them to build relationships with others.


The Leader
52%

People with The Leader personality likes to start and work on projects. They also like leading people and making many decisions.


The Organizer
19%

People with The Organizer personality type likes to follow set procedures and routines. They prefer working with data and details more than with ideas.


You can read more about these career personality types here.

People who are suitable for this job tend to like work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery.

They also like working with, communicating with, and teaching people. They like helping or providing service to others.

Take this quiz to see if this is the right career for you.

Work Values

Which values are the most important to a person’s satisfaction for this job?

Achievement
71%

You are someone who is results oriented. You prefer work that allows you to utilize your skills and abilities while at the same time giving you a sense of accomplishment.

Working Conditions
62%

You are someone who values job security, steady employment, and good working conditions. You also prefer work that keeps you busy all the time with something different to do every day.

Recognition
67%

You are someone who values job advancement and leadership roles. You prefer work that receives recognition for the work you do and jobs that are looked up to by others in the company and your community.

Relationships
76%

You are someone who likes to provide a service to others. You prefer a work environment where you can work with your co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment.

Support
86%

You are someone who values a company that stands behind their employees. You prefer a work environment where everyone is treated fairly and is being supported by the company.

Independence
67%

You are someone who likes to work on your own and make your own decisions. You prefer work that requires little supervision and are allowed to try out your own ideas.

FAQ

How to become a Firefighter?

There are a few things that you need to do. A lot of academies will require you to undergo EMT training beforehand..but many will cover it in their curriculum. You also must be living in the area that you choose to apply in. You need to have a valid driver’s license, and you need to … Read More

Answered by:
Thomas Zheng
Firefighter


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