Firefighter Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Firefighter, or Fireman/Firewoman saves and protects people from fires and other dangers. Their duties include extinguishing fires, educating the public about fire prevention and responding to emergency medical situations.


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Firefighter duties and responsibilities

A Firefighter has a wide range of tasks that will vary daily. They need to be prepared for high-pressure situations and methodological problem-solving tasks. Their main responsibilities and duties include: 

  • Inspecting, cleaning and maintaining equipment
  • Carrying out practice drills and training new employees
  • Rescuing people from burning buildings and accident sites
  • Controlling and putting out fires
  • Analysing dangerous situations and determining the best course of action
  • Providing medical assistance at accident sites
  • Inspecting buildings to ensure they meet safety regulations
  • Giving presentations about fire safety to different community groups


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Firefighter Job Description Examples:


Example 1

East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service (ESFRS) works within a large and diverse area on the south coast of England, covering rural locations as well as a busy city centre and urban seaside towns. We are committed to keeping our communities safer and we need exceptional people to help us do that. We have existing and anticipated vacancies for Firefighters at Shift, Day Crewed and On-Call stations. We are therefore seeking applications from substantive, competent Firefighters wishing to transfer to ESFRS through a pool process. We are seeking enthusiastic individuals to assist in the delivery of the Service’s core values and play a crucial role in the provision of high quality protection, prevention and response services. All applicants must have evidence of maintaining their skills, knowledge and understanding in line with their Services’ recording of competence scheme. External applicants will be required to provide details of this at application stage, to include training records and proof of competency. Candidates must also be able to demonstrate, at interview, the behaviours expected under the ‘Leading Yourself’ section of the ESFRS Leadership and Behavioural Framework. Successful applicants will be invited to express preferences for posts or locations once the selection process has concluded. Appointment from the pool will be based on a variety of factors designed to ensure that the Service secures the right skills, knowledge and experience in the right posts as we continue to build on our future. Please refer to the candidate guidance for further information. Closing Date: Sunday 4 July 2021 Date: W/C 26 July 2021 and 2 August 2021 Please note that recruitment processes may be withdrawn or varied at short notice due to the Services' Organisational Change Policy. East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service values diversity, promotes equality and challenges discrimination. We therefore welcome applications from all sections of the community.

Example 2

*Role Overview* To maintain a fully effective Emergency Fire Service in order to save life and to protect property in line with company standards and licensing requirements. *Main Areas of Responsibility* · Deal with emergency situations in accordance with specified in order to save life and protect property · Efficiently mobilise the resources required in responding to emergency incidents · Maintain effective working relationships with internal and external bodies to ensure an effective integrated response to emergency situations and promote a professional image of Falck Fire Services · Maintain required level of competencies as specified by the regulator in order to uphold the airport license · Maintain equipment for operational readiness to specified standards in order to meet internal and external audit requirements · Promote and adopt safe working practices to ensure that self, colleagues, and customers are not put at risk, and that health, safety and the environment are given the highest priority at all times · Be responsible for personal and team compliance with Company Health and Safety Policies, ensuring safe working practices to minimise risk to self, work colleagues, customers and staff is minimised · Comply with all legal and statutory obligations applicable to this role · Ensure that any systems and procedures introduced by the Company, including those delivered under Enterprise, are effectively implemented, and adhered to · Participate in projects and working parties and to carry out any other duties that may be outside the standard remit for the purpose of personal development, or as may be reasonably required by the Company *Key Attributes* Essential: · Full UK Driving License holder · Meets and maintains Civil Aviation Authority and Company medical and physical standards · Ability to build and maintain strong, effective working relationships across the business and influence key stakeholders · Demonstrated evidence of good communication skills at all levels · Ability to work on own initiative & perform well under pressure *Desirable: * · Certified First Aider/FREC trained · LGV Driving License holder · Fire Service Experience *Framework & Boundaries* · Save life at aerodrome incidents · Extinguish fire · Maintain operational readiness of resources · Manage aerodrome hazards · Provide emergency first aid and support to people affected by aerodrome incidents · Mobilise resources to respond to emergency · Drive and deploy fire-fighting vehicles and vessels · Contain and control hazardous substances · Develop self and others to improve performance · Take responsibility for effective personal performance Starting salary for this role is £32,814.98 + Shift Disturbance Allowance of £5683.78 Application deadline: 30/06/2021 Job Types: Full-time, Permanent Salary: £32,814.98 per year Benefits: * Life insurance * On-site parking * Private medical insurance * Sick pay Schedule: * 12 hour shift COVID-19 considerations: Falck Fire Services UK Ltd have a COVID assurance programme in place Education: * GCSE or equivalent (preferred) Experience: * work: 1 year (preferred)

Example 3

Vacancy Number: 423 CES VA21 RPA 29468Closes: 29 June 2021, 23:596 hours over a two week period £ £10.57 +15% Firefighter supplement = £12.16ph Main Purpose The primary purpose of this position is to serve as a firefighter assigned to drive and operate firefighting vehicles of significant complexity engaged in structural firefighting, rescue, and Hazardous Materials (Hazmat), operations assist in reducing and/or eliminating potential fire hazards to protect 1erson, property, or the environment and performing non-invasive emergency medical procedures. Drives and operates firefighting vehicles, such as pumpers. Drives to the scene of the fire following a predetermined route or selecting an alternate when necessary and positions vehicle considering factors, such as wind direction, sources of water, hazards from falling structures, etc. Operates pumps and other similar equipment. Performs structural firefighting duties for a variety of facilities, which may include research and/or large industrial complexes. Maintains firefighting equipment and fire station facilities. Complies with health, safety, and environmental rules and procedures and performs work in a manner that enhances the safety of the work environment. Knowledge and Experience Required 1. Knowledge of basic and specialized structural firefighting equipment (fire alarm system operation, fire extinguishing equipment operation, etc.), techniques, and procedures; of basic and specialized building design, construction, and occupancy; to drive and operate firefighting vehicles of significant complexity; and of the principles of hydraulics as they pertain to water flow, water pressure, water levels, line(friction) losses, etc. 2. Knowledge of hazardous materials emergency response procedures, equipment, and identification. 3. Knowledge of emergency first aid techniques; and of safety requirements as outlined in applicable safety standards, regulations, and/or technical orders. 4. Skill in operating communications equipment. 5. Ability to maintain good working relations; and to communicate orally and in writing. 6. Ability to lift and carry heavy loads; and to apply emergency first aid techniques. Other Important Information Employee must participate in a mandatory physical fitness program which meets UK/US physical & medical requirements. Employee is required to use all safety equipment and clothing provided by management. The position requires the ability to discern colors, contrast, and depth. Employee is required to be certified by the Department of Defense (DOD) Firefighter Certification System as Firefighter I, II, Hazmat Awareness, Hazmat Operations and obtain certification in Driver Operator. The incumbent may be required to also obtain certification for Telecommunicator, Level I & II. Please note: Training plans will be established and monitored by the supervisor and may specify the length of time the employee has to obtain certification. Some training may require recertification on a regular or intermittent basis. This position requires a valid LGV Cat C licence. Training to achieve can be provided. May be required to travel by military and/or civilian aircraft in the performance of official duties, or attend necessary training. Position is located at RAF Alconbury but the incumbent may be required to work at the RAF Molesworth Fire Station when directed by management. Mandatory retirement age for LNDH operational firefighter is age 60. Employee is requires to pass an annual medical examination. Benefits  Paid Annual Leave  Paid Sick Leave  Pension Scheme  Life Assurance Scheme Who Can Apply Citizens of the [website] Nationals of European Community (EC) Countries, and Commonwealth Citizens, other Foreign Nationals, and Stateless persons provided no restrictions have been imposed as a condition of continued residency in the UK. Applicants who have a minimum of five years consecutive residency in the UK are considered for this position; however, those who do not meet this criteria will be considered on a case-by-case basis. All successful applicants will require a security clearance. Please note pre-appointment security clearance requirements may delay start date. Proof of identification in the form of a photo ID will be required, for example a driving licence or current passport. This position may have certain restrictions to US citizens due to the Status of Forces Agreement. For additional information contact the LNDH team on 01638 544955. How To Apply Interested candidates must complete an application form obtainable from the Civilian Personnel Website; [website]?ver=2016-04-28-085219- 410. All applications, with relevant attachments and CV must be submitted via email to and received prior to the closing date. Equal Opportunity Employer There will be no discrimination in employment practices based on gender, age, marital status, disability, race, nationality, religion or beliefs, sexual orientation, being or not being a member of a trade union. 3

What does a Firefighter do?

A Firefighter is a figure of safety within a community. They respond to fires at homes and other premises, rescuing people from buildings and putting out fires. They also respond to medical emergencies and are trained and qualified to provide minor, urgent medical care. They also play an educating role, ensuring the public is aware of different fire prevention methods. They may host outreach events within the community.


Firefighter skills and qualifications

Firefighters should posses high emotional intelligence, have quick decision-making skills and be able to assess dangerous situations. A successful Firefighter candidate will have various prerequisite skills and qualifications that typically include:

  • Ability to remain calm in extremely stressful situations
  • Sensitivity and understanding
  • Excellent verbal communication skills
  • Teamwork skills
  • Ability to work well under pressure and accept constructive criticism
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Thorough attention to detail
  • Ability to meet physically demanding requirements


Firefighter experience requirements

Although this is a very specific job, there are a few ways for applicants to gain experience in this field. Some applicants may have volunteered or worked in a support role at an emergency call centre. Some people can prepare by completing a Level 2 Certificate in Fire and Rescue Services in the Community. This is a course run by local fire services that teaches the importance of fire prevention. Applicants must be physically fit and able to complete a variety of physical tests in order to apply for this position. 


Firefighter education and training requirements

While some applicants may have taken a Level 2 or 3 Diploma in Public Services course, this is usually not necessary when applying to a Firefighter position. Most applicants will have applied directly to the fire service, which requires some GCSEs at grades 9 to 4, including maths and English. The fire service requires all applicants to pass an online test accessing their judgement ability as well as a number and reading test. Finally, they are given a practical selection test that accesses the physical skills needed for the job. Once these tests are complete and passed, an applicant can apply for a job. 


Firefighter salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for a Firefighter in the UK is £2,637 per month. Salary is dependent on experience, location and company.


Job description samples for similar positions

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Firefighter job description FAQs


What is the difference between a Firefighter and a Paramedic?

Paramedics are healthcare professionals who respond to emergency medical calls and provide medical transport and treatment. Firefighters are rescuers extensively trained in extinguishing fires and responding to other emergencies. Firefighters can also be Paramedics or Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) and provide medical care.


Who does a Firefighter report to?

The hierarchy of the fire service can be quite technical, especially for those working in a large city. Generally a Firefighter reports to a Leading Firefighter or Station Officer. The exact chain of command will change depending on the station, but applicants must be aware of the exact hierarchy for the station they are applying for. 


How can you make your Firefighter job description stand out?

Focus on what makes the company or station different from others by highlighting things like a pension scheme, employee assistance programme, gym membership and competitive salary. Also, highlight the potential for growth within the organisation. Many applicants will be looking for a station where they can move up in the ranks to Divisional Officer or Chief Fire Officer. 


What are the different types of Firefighters?

There are many different types of Firefighters. These include Structural Firefighters, who respond to residential fires, medical emergencies and fires in commercial structures in a town or city, Wildland Firefighters, who are trained to extinguish or prevent fires in vast plains and rugged mountains, Aircraft Firefighters, who control fire on aircraft and Shipboard Firefighters, who fight fires on ships. 

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