A career as a firefighter in government could be in your future. Fire Department employees provide fire, rescue and emergency medical training as well as many other services to the citizens.
What Services do Fire Departments Provide?
The largest division of a Fire Department is responsible for putting out fire, and providing emergency medical and other emergency services. Fire pumpers, quints and ladder trucks are strategically located throughout a city in fire stations, assuring quick emergency response to citizens. Firefighters answer fire emergencies call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Other calls can include automobile accidents, extrication, bomb search, electrical shorts, natural gas leaks, underwater search and recovery and various hazardous material leaks and spills.
FIRE INSPECTION – Firefighter Job Duties
Inspectors enforce a city’s Fire Code. Commercial, industrial, public assembly, hospitals and other institutional properties are inspected regularly. Different types of permits and licenses are issued by a city’s Fire Department.
FIRE SAFETY EDUCATION – Firefighter Job Duties
Human carelessness most often causes fire. Fire Departments offers public information and training courses and provides speakers for groups.
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BOMB AND ARSON – Firefighter Job Duties
Fires which are deliberately set kill and injure thousands of people each year. Arson investigation is done by a city’s Fire investigation Division. All suspicious fires, regardless of the amount of loss, are investigated. Investigators are firefighters who received police certification or have gone through a fire investigation training program. They also are trained in bomb search and bomb disarming procedures.
A computer-aided dispatch system allows fire alarm operators to dispatch the nearest fire company to an emergency. Telephone and two-way radio communication exists between fire stations and Dispatch. Fire trucks are equipped with two-way radios and an additional portable radio as well.
Fire Services also includes Fire Supply and Building and Equipment Maintenance.
FIRE TRAINING – Firefighter Job Duties
Entry-level firefighters attend an academy for before serving as probationary employees. Training academies provide ongoing classes for firefighters throughout a city.
EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES – Firefighter Job Duties
First responders are where the nearest fire company is dispatched to any medical emergency. Firefighters are usually state-certified Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs). Officers coordinate operations with the ambulance company, hospitals and other city departments.
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT – Firefighter Job Duties
Emergency Management coordinates activities during emergencies and formulates disaster plans for storms, floods, explosions, etc. During emergencies, key people coordinate the efforts for a city and assure maximum use of resources and manpower. City staff and volunteers receive special training to meet the requirements of the office. National Guard members can be called to active duty in disasters or extreme emergencies are assigned to this office for training as well.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: I’ve gone by my neighborhood fire station on several occasions to buy garbage bags and have found the station locked, but a fire truck is parked inside. What is going on?
A: Fire Departments respond to many emergency calls as well as constantly improving skills with in-service training. It also does commercial inspections. The increase of duties has changed the traditional role of firefighters and has resulted in more time being spent away from the stations. Many stations have reserve trucks which remain in the station when firefighters are called to an emergency.
Q: Why can’t I dial the telephone number of my nearest fire station to report a fire or medical emergency?
A: It is extremely important that all emergencies be reported to 911. That is the number of Dispatch which is operated by round-the clock dispatchers using the computer aided dispatch system. If you call your local fire station, firefighters could be out on a call. Dispatch can provide the fastest response to your emergency.
Q: Why does the Fire Department use its big truck when it answers medical emergency calls?
A: The larger trucks are designed, equipped and manned to handle minor and major incidents. A major vehicle accident could involve rescue (extrication), medical treatment and fire protection, all within the capability of large fire trucks.
Q: Does the Fire Department recommend smoke alarms?
A: The Fire death rate has decreased 40 percent nationally since smoke alarms gained popularity. According to the United States Fire Administration, a family is two and one-half times more likely to survive a night fire if its home has smoke alarms.