How Do I Become a Firefighter?

Christy Williams Firefighter Training

Although this seems like a straightforward question, many variables might affect your decision-making process. First, do you want to be a full-time, part-time or volunteer firefighter? A full-time firefighter in the State of Ohio requires the following certifications: Firefighter I & II, hazardous materials awareness, hazardous materials operations and incident command system 100 & 700. According to the Bureau Labor and Statistic Occupational Employment Statistics 2012 survey, the median annual wage for a full-time firefighter was $42,250. A part-time firefighter in the State of Ohio requires the following certifications: Firefighter I, hazardous materials awareness, and incident command system 100 & 700. A part-time firefighter in the State of Ohio usually starts out just above minimum wage and tops out around $12 to $13 an hour. Many full-time firefighters start as part-time firefighters at their department. Finally, a volunteer firefighter in the State of Ohio requires the following certifications: Firefighter 36-hour course and incident command system 100 & 700. Volunteer firefighters are typically community members who want to help others within their community.

As I mentioned earlier, many variables may affect your decision to become a firefighter. Did you know that about 90% of Fire Departments in Central Ohio are dual departments? Meaning the department provides both fire and EMS services. State of Ohio EMS certifications includes EMT, Intermediate and Paramedic. EMS personnel must also have a hazardous materials awareness course and incident command system 100 & 700.

Feeling a little overwhelmed now with the decision-making process of being a firefighter? Tolles Public Safety Department will help you with the process. Tolles has over 30 professional firefighters and EMS personnel on staff, many of whom are decision makers within their respective department. Additionally, Tolles within its base EMT and Fire courses provide the hazardous materials and incident command system at no additional cost. Further, Tolles offers internships at over 15 area departments during your education to help you make a decision as to what agencies are right for you.

At Tolles, we have made the decision-making process of becoming a firefighter easy by offering all firefighter and EMT certifications each semester. This allows you to move from one course to the other and finish with your base level education in less than a year. Further, our courses are transferable to any State of Ohio higher education facility if you choose to add to your base education. Give us a call at 614-873-4666 ext. 4335 and let us discuss your future with you.