Become a Firefighter in Virginia

VirginiaThose who want to have a challenging and rewarding career will want to consider all of the great benefits of becoming a firefighter. Virginia firefighters put their lives at risk daily and perform daring rescues while pulling people out of burning buildings and raging rivers. If you want to become a firefighter in Virginia, you first need to make sure that you will qualify.

How to Become a Firefighter in Virginia

You need to be 18 years of age or older, and you have to have a valid driver’s license. Many departments have education requirements, and this means that you will want to have a high school diploma or equivalent at least. If you have higher degrees, such as a fire science degree from accredited schools or colleges, that could work in your favor.

Applicants will need to be able to pass a background check, and they will have to be able to pass a civil service test. Once they pass the written test, they will also have to be able to pass a physical agility test. When you become a probationary firefighter, you will then have to complete your basic firefighter training and any other requirements of the department. They will usually have a specified amount of time for you to complete those requirements.

Once you are a firefighter, you will find that the training is always going to continue. You will have plenty of on the job training that will cover a variety of different areas, and you will often participate in training drills.

Employment Trends for Firefighters

Across the country, the projected growth rate for firefighter jobs in the next few years is only 9%. This is a bit lower than the 14% that other jobs are expecting. You can still find departments that are hiring, but unless you have something to put you above the other candidates, you might not get the job. Having a degree from accredited fire science programs is a nice option that could give you the advantage.

Salary and Employment Facts

Firefighters in Virginia will find that they have great salaries that are very much in line with the national average for firefighter salaries. The average salary for a firefighter in Virginia is $58,000 per year.

Firefighter Activity in the News

Wildfires are in the news again. Firefighters from eight different jurisdictions have converged on the wildfires throughout Rockbridge County in western Virginia. More than 2,600 acres have burned in the wildfire.

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