Firefighting is one of the most important, but very demanding careers. Despite the fact that many people might not see firefighting as a career of choice, the truth of the matter is that firemen and women do a greatly work to ensure that lives are saved in case of fire threat and thus can be termed as heroes by all standards. However, for these professionals to do their work successfully, proper firefighter training is required to help be in the best physical shape thus being able to face the challenges presented by fire outbreaks. Rigorous training is required to help these civil servants to respond to different emergency situations. There are different kinds of training and qualification requirements depending with the state where the firefighter receives his training but some of these requirements are quite standard.
Most jurisdictions require that trainees be in possession of a high school diploma or higher although many institutions are nowadays preferring potential trainees to have associate degree in fire science. Before an applicant is considered for the actual firefighter training, these education requirements must be met. The advantage of meeting educational and physical requirements is that, candidates who wish to receive the training can have the state or city government paying for their training program.
Firefighting is a physically involving career as firefighters will have to perform many tasks which are physically demanding. One must therefore meet certain physical requirements such as agility, hearing and vision. One will therefore be required to undergo hearing and vision acuity test to establish his or her suitability as a candidate for the training. Before receiving firefighter training, one might also be required to undergo some medical tests to determine his/her physical strength, stamina and agility. This is always an important procedure before sitting for a civil service exam, a requirement for all applicants in many jurisdictions.
Firefighting training programs
Normally, firefighters are trained upon hire. Different cities and states have different training requirements as far as hours required for formal training is concerned. In many jurisdictions, firefighters must receive basic certification as emergency medical technicians. The training curriculum normally involves classroom training, together with physical and practical training programs. These programs are designed to help firefighters to be equipped with necessary skills not only for them to pass their physical and written tests but also to understand how to approach different emergency situations when they arise.
Firefighters have to be trained on the necessary first aid and emergency medical technology skills. This training part is important as it helps understand how a firefighter should handle those rescued from scenes of fire outbreak. Firefighters can continue with their training to attain certification for Firefighter II level or even train for 2 years to receive a degree in fire science. Additionally, one can continue with firefighter training for 4 years and attain a fire engineering degree. Other firefighting training programs include arson investigation, paramedical training, forest fires, and first responder training and handling hazardous materials among other courses. These courses are important especially for those who desire to go up the ranks in firefighting career.
Due to the increase demand and competition, receiving the most advanced firefighter training is very important. Proper training not only helps firefighters to rise in rank but also equips them with essential skills on how to protect the public and themselves in case of a fire. Some firefighting schools offer online and hands-on firefighter training thus equipping trainees with the necessary skills for a career in firefighting.