Coronavirus Update: Our team is here to help our clients and readers navigate these difficult times. Visit our Resources page now »

Skip to Main Content


Firefighter—Career Q&A: Professional Advice and Insight

Join Vault Gold to watch these Q&A videos

Firefighters protect people's lives and property from the hazards of fire and other emergencies. They provide this protection by fighting fires to prevent property damage and by rescuing people trapped or injured by fires or other accidents. Through inspections and safety education, firefighters also work to prevent fires and unsafe conditions that could result in dangerous, life-threatening situations. They assist in many types of emergencies and disasters in everyday life. Although in many rural areas firefighters serve on a volunteer basis, this article is mainly concerned with describing full-time career firefighters. There are approximately 318,790 paid firefighters working in the United States.

Salary Range

$25,000 to $100,000

Minimum Education Level

High School Diploma




About as Fast as the Average
Personality Traits




Career Ladder
Fire Chief

Fire Captain

Fire Inspector or Fire Investigator


Ladder or Hose Handler