What is it like to be a firefighter i want to know cause when i get out of High School I'm going to join Boston Fireor my Home town fire department I chase fire truck since i was 5 all ways wanted to be a firefighter
Mark....Lots of hard work and school work...Math and science especially....you will be amazed at the math and science involved...from the chemical processes going on in the different stages of a fire...to the reactions with hazmat...and yes math...figuring fire flows, and water expected to be needed and pump pressures to get wanted flow, and friction losses of hose lines and percentages for foam applications....it takes a lot of smarts...Firefighting isn't all bull work anymore....Study hard, keep straight, keep fit...maybe start in a local department and keep taking tests...you will do it if it is what you really want....remember nothing is out of your grasp if you work hard enough.....Good luck...and if I can help let me know..........Paul
Please watch This video it will tell you all you need to know. Its a two part video besure to watch both parts if you are serious about the fire service. Chief Lasky explains it so well.
All good advice.Join the local dept. and see how it operates and if you like it or not.There are so many facets to this business,it's unbelievable.Best thing to do is hook up with your local department and find a yourself a mentor.This isn't always a quick process,and it shouldn't be.It could be a more experienced fire fighter,a line officer or a chief officer.After a while you will know who it is.I don't know how to explain who it is but you will know.Then start learning from them.Ask lots of questions(there are no stupid questions)and when they are teaching you things,just listen and absorb like a sponge.Take some classes and start to gain some knowledge and time will bring experience.I'm with a small volunteer dept.and I've been to everything from a cat in a tree(Honest to God)to a major refinery fire.You never know what the next call is going to be.It's never boring.
I have not been on that long but I love it.... I would not want to do anything else. Yes it is A LOT harder then I thought it would be when I started but I would not trade it for the world. Do not get me wrong, I knew it would be hard but all I saw was the "glory if you will" of it all, then the first time I spent a few hours running around in the gear the first thing I thought was "crap I need to get in shape" lol Keep working at what you want, I know it sounds cheesy but keep your eyes on the target and never give up, you could get you wish. Also be sure this is what you want.... It is not for every one, you may see things you do not want and deal with things that will bother you for a long time. Firefighting is as much mental as it is physical if not more.
Same thing for your hometown. You don't just JOIN a career fire department. I think they said for every 200 applicants out there, there is 1 spot available. Many never make it. I'm sure that number is even up with the economy how it is now.
Others mentioned that if you try hard, you will get it. That's not completely true if you want an honest answer. Boston has a very weird hiring practice. If you are a resident and have veteran points, you have a shot with a good test score. If you don't live in the city already you really have no shot. It's just how they are.
Most people that want the job bad enough travel around the country testing. Then you take whoever gives you a shot. You may only get one offer in your life.