Firefighter Resume Sample & Writing Guide

Last Updated on March 24, 2021

Are you looking to jump into a new job as a firefighter? Why don't you first review our Firefighter Resume sample detailing every aspect to consider when crafting your own unique resume content. As a firefighter, your primary responsibilities are to control fires, distinguish blazes, and respond to emergencies where human lives, properties, or the environment is at risk.

However, the role of a Firefighter encompasses so much more than just being able to run into burning buildings to rescue people or fighting bushfires 24/7. This is where we come in…our guideline on how to create a fantastic resume for firefighter roles, is packed with valuable tips, advice, and information to assist you in creating a sizzling hot resume document.

17 Firefighter Resume Examples

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(Free sample downloads are at the bottom of this page)

The Firefighter Resume Writing Guide:

Resume Sections

1. Contact Information:

  • Name
  • Address,
  • Phone
  • Email

Be sure to include alternative contact channels like your Facebook Messenger URL, Instagram, or Twitter account.

2. Resume Summary:
A synopsis or career overview paragraph is a sure-fire way to attract the attention of hiring managers and getting them to read through the rest of your resume. Include a paragraph that emphasizes your strongest attributes, techniques, special skills, certifications years of experience.

3. Qualifications Summary:
Entry-level firemen need to have completed a high school diploma, coupled with certification in first responder emergency medical treatment, to get accepted into “fire school.”

Then candidates complete Fire Academy training for a few months before writing an exam and completing numerous physical tests and interviews. You also need to complete an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification.

If you are more seasoned, years of experience would weigh more, but the possibilities of climbing the career ladder dramatically increase if additional certifications and qualifications are obtained. Make sure to include all credentials and list them by date of completion, title, and institution attended.

4. Relevant Firefighter Experience: 
Present your career history in reverse chronological format, clearly indicating where you have been employed, for which period and 5-7 primary duties per each role. firefighters often work in seasonal settings, on a contract, or in a volunteering capacity. Therefore you need to clarify each role properly for the last decade of your working history.

5. Skills Summary/Key Skills:
Your firefighter resume should include a separate skills section where you may present technical skills, interpersonal traits, and also physical attributes. Use the job advertisement as your guideline to decide which skills you need to highlight.

What to Highlight in a Firefighter Resume

Regardless of your experience as a firefighter, recruiters, and employers are interested in more than you fearlessly running into burning buildings or being in peak physical condition.

Firstly, you need to mention the type of environmental setting you have exposure to in terms of your working experience. For example, fighting forest fire takes additional skills and competencies in terms of the equipment used in comparison with residential fire emergencies. You may also need to be skilled in creating fire lines, cut down sections of trees, or even jumping out of planes as a smokejumper to reach fire areas not readily accessible on foot or vehicle. Another specialized form of fire fighting is in hazardous materials, for example, chemical accidents or oil spills. Any specialist work environment experience will be to your advantage.

Next up is your certifications. Even though these will be mentioned in the academic section, your experience sections should highlight the practical experience gained relating to the specialized certifications you hold, for example, performing CPR, knowledge of first aid, and first responder treatments for burn victims. Provide details about the medical equipment you can operate, such as defibrillators or oxygen tanks.

Recruiters and Hiring Managers would be interested to know what your physical condition and fitness levels are like. If you can provide a physician assessment indicating a clean bill of health, include this in your application. Then, you need to look a the job advertisement and pick out the essential and preferred physical requirements, which you can then mention in your job duties indicating fitness, dexterity, and endurance. A more detailed representation of all your physical attributes will be summarized in a skills matrix on the last page of your resume. Still, it is always a smart idea to sprinkle some of them into your career summary and job descriptions sections.

Another aspect to highlight is your working experience in terms of companies and industries. For example, firefighters may work for local governments and municipalities on a full-time basis, but you also get firefighters who work part-time. The latter volunteer or perform duties ad hoc as needed over weekends, for example. Federal and State Governments also employ firefighters on a full time, and contract basis (seasonal), and corporate companies such as industrial factories, chemical plants, and airports have there own inhouse firefighting department.

The next section should discuss your day to day operations. Recruiters would want to know what you get up to when you are not actively on a call out. Furthermore, your availability and work schedule followed is a further matter that should be clarified in terms of duration and frequency of shifts, weekend schedules, and also time out of state or away from home if you are a seasonal firefighter.

Technical competencies regarding actual firefighting duties, as well as the many health and safety protocols you need to adhere to, should be addressed as well. A firefighter's role goes beyond the scope of putting out fires with a water hose. Fire Station Chiefs would want to know about your experience in protecting the public during emergencies, for example cordoning off areas in the instance of a chemical spill, flooding, car crash, or evacuating people during a bomb threat or riot situation. firefighters are also responsible for rescuing victims at industrial accidents, victims from water accidents, or people stuck in buildings during natural disaster situations.

Also, allocate a paragraph for non-fire fighting and emergency duties such as maintaining, cleaning, and inspecting equipment between uses, promoting fire safety at schools, conducting practice drills, writing reports about emergency incidents, and participating in theoretical and physical training sessions.

A few optional extras:

  • State the location, areas or regions you are willing to work in
  • Also, mention your availability for instance only looking for a volunteering gig during weekends or full-on 24hr to 48-hour shift work
  • If you are open to seasonal work ad comfortable being away from home for extended periods, be sure to mention that as well
  • Indicate your knowledge regarding safety standards of the specific state you can work in regarding enforcing rules and regulations in public places during emergencies, accident avoidance measures and also protocols to follow in case of injury and death
  • Often not thought of in a firefighter setting, but any additional languages you can speak would be to your advantage especially if you are working as a seasonal firefighter in other countries.

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Firefighter Career Summary Examples

The career synopsis in your resume should be short but powerful. Aim for a well-written paragraph of 3-6 lines (should take no more than 20 seconds to review).

Fire Station Chiefs are busy people and may receive hundreds of resumes per month. Your career summary is the one change you have to make an impression and attract their interest to read through the rest of your resume document. It is not uncommon for hiring managers to base their initial screening solely on what is written in the career synopsis sections.

Candidates are often unsure as to what to write in a career synopsis. Remember that this summary should not be a recollection of a few job duties but rather a representation of your entire career covering years of experience, specialist skills, one or two achievements, most appropriate interpersonal traits, and academic credentials or certifications.

A smart trick is to pick 2 or 3 of the most prominent skills and requirements from the job advertisement and weave these into your career synopsis. This will also help to circumvent the ATS and screening bots by mirroring verbiage from the job ad on your resume. Remember no match, no shortlist.

Let's consider a few examples to get you started:

Three Examples of Firefighter career summaries:

4 yeas of Experience Career Summary:

Enthusiastic firefighter with four years of experience in fire-fighting and medical emergency response. Landed the top spot in the CAL Fire Academy training program and became the youngest person to be accepted into the Forest Fire Fighting Academy of California. Trained and certified in multiple specializations FAST rapid intervention. State-Certified Firefighter & EMT Paramedic and holds a Master Diver Certification.

10 years or Experience Career Summary:

Conscientious firefighter with a decade of experience in firefighting and emergency response environments. Exceptional judgment exuded and known for quick thinking and a calm attitude in highly pressurized settings. Exemplary track record for displaying superb leadership and collaboration skills regardless of the situational intensity. Highly competent at NREMT, EMT-I, EMT-B, and EMT-P procedures and protocols. In peak physical condition with numerous continuous professional development (CPD) certifications completed in medical emergency preparedness, fire prevention, and fire management approaches. Present fire education programs at schools and community colleges regularly.

15 years of Experience Career Summary

Safety conscious Fire Fighting professional with more than 15 years of experience. Highly adept at executing firefighting activities to control fires and eliminate fire risks in conjunction with rescuing trapped people and providing pre-hospital first aid treatment. Proven mechanical aptitude in operating and maintenance of firefighting and emergency response machinery tool s and equipment. Registered EMT with a completed Bachelors Degree in Fire Fighting Sciences.”

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Firefighter Job Descriptions, Responsibilities and Duty Examples

Prospective employers expect to see specific foundational skills and job activities in a Firefighter Resume. Have a look at the example job descriptions below and use these a template to create your own unique set of duties. Be Specific!

Your experience section is generally looked at first (together with your career synopsis), and using generic duties to explain your working experience is not going to do you any favors. Every bullet point chosen should be meaningful and serve the purpose of proving to a hiring manager that you are a fit for the role at hand. Use the advertisement as your guideline to decide which duties to add and which tasks to omit.  

We have provided examples of Firefighter job descriptions in various working environments below, to help you craft a stellar experience section.

A Residential Firefighter may:

  • Respond to fire and emergency alarms to assist in confining and extinguishment of fires and resultant hazardous aftermath
  • Conduct residential and commercial inspections to identify potential fire risks and ensure compliance to local, state and federal laws, protocols and ordinances in terms of fire safety practices
  • Participate in proficiency training to develop and expand skills and keep abreast of new rules and regulations regarding fire management and safety
  • Attend all exercises, drills, fitness tests and staff meetings at the Fire Station
  • Participated in proficiency training and study to develop, maintain, and expand job skills, study Fire Department rules and regulations and attend drills, exercise, and staff conferences.
  • Operate fire hoses and other fire extinguishing equipment to put fires out quickly while still reducing water damage
  • Use resuscitators and inhalators where necessary
  • Assist law officers and other emergency responders on scene in managing crowds, providing progress updates and keeping areas clear for paramedics to attend to victims

An Industrial Firefighter (Airport, Factory, Plant, Facility) may:

  • Respond swiftly to emergency calls related to medical incidents, suppressing of fires and clearing areas of hazardous materials in the case of spillages
  • Initiate and apply the appropriate medical treatment as a first responder official including general first aid and advanced life support treatment
  • Rescue and evacuate people trapped in buildings by using a variety of fire rescue tools and equipment
  • Create ventilation openings in buildings to facilitate adequate airflow for survivors and assist paramedics with CPR and other first-aid duties
  • Assist in operating nozzles, direct water streams and handle placement of fire ladders
  • Participate in fire investigations and preservation of evidence in case of suspected arson
  • Write incident reports to be submitted to investigating officers and give statements and testimonies in court where required
  • Repair and maintain fire fighting equipment and apparatus, and conduct safety inspections and testing on equipment and tools to ensure safety and proper functionality

A Wildland/Forest Firefighter may:

  • Conduct regular repair and maintenance activities on heavy equipment such as chain saws, fire engines, mowers and tractors used in combatting forest fires
  • Active crew member during fire breaks and fire line prepping involving rock removal, trimming, mowing and brush clearing
  • Assist in fire prevention initiatives as directed by the Fish And Wildlife department regulations
  • Participate as a smokejumper to gain access to areas where vehicles cannot get to
  • Assist in pruning, trimming and thinning out forest areas, maintain recreation areas and clear overgrowth to reduce fire risks.

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Highlight Your Accomplishments

The trick to a fantastic accomplishment section is quantification. Use numeric values to reinforce your contributions and achievements during your career as a firefighter. Think about activities that you are most proud of and string them together in concise but impactful accomplishment statements.

This section is all about cause and effect….how did you make a difference?

Steer clear of too many buzzwords and use technical terms sparingly in this section. The aim is to highlight your impact as a valid team member via measurable accomplishments. Use powerful action words in your statements to emphasize your value add.

What are you most proud of? It's a difficult question, but including the answer to it in your firefighter resume can make a huge difference. Use bullet points for your accomplishment statement and perhaps use a different font, or bold the keywords in each statement for maximum impact.

Examples of Firefighter accomplishment statements

  • Receive the CSFA Medal of Valor for leading an isolated unit in a 10,000-acre containment effort in the Australian Fires of 2019
  • Expand the Fire Safety and Prevention program for kids from 7 to 14 events per year
  • Earned a “Silver Grade” Award for acts of bravery during a chemical plant explosion that saved the lives of 80 workers and prevented life-threatening injuries
  • Trained and coached 15 volunteer Fire Fighters graduating from Fire School every quarter
  • Implemented improved inspection and monitoring systems to maintain regular preventative repair schedules of fire equipment which reduced malfunctions to less than 3%

Firemen Education Section Example

You can land a Figher Fighter role full time, part-time, or as a volunteer without having to complete any formal education. However, the more credentials you have, the better your chances of securing higher payings fire gigs. Furthermore, should you wish to climb the corporate fire ladder, certifications, diplomas, and formal degrees are going to be essential in your quest.

List all qualifications, accreditations, and certifications starting with dates of completion, then descriptive name, institution, location, and state.

Here are some examples of a Firefighter Resume in terms of education:

2020 – Bachelor Degree in Fire Science, Loyola University, CA

2019 – Diploma in Fire Alarm Design & Maintenance, National Technical Institute of Fire Alarming Systems, Baton Rouge, LA

2018 – EMT Licensing, American Red Cross, Miami, FL

2018 – Advanced CPR, American Red Cross, Miami, FL

2017 – Fire Ground Safety Officer, International Association of Fire Fighters, Orange County, CA

2016 – Texas State-Certified Firefighter Level III, Fire Management Association, Austin, TX

2015 – Red Cross CPR and AED First Aid Certification, Maclean, VA

2016 – Advanced First Aid Diploma, National CPR Foundation, Miami, FL

What to Write in a Firefighter Resume Skills Section

Potential employers may have different minimum requirements listed on the job advertisement, but technical skills, physical traits, and personality attributes are pretty standard for the role of a Firefighter. Present your competencies in a skills matrix where you would include a column to physical traits, one too technical skills, and one to personal skills. Below is an example to get you started.

Physical SkillsTechnical SkillsSoft Skills
Manual DexterityFire Incident Reporting SystemsPunctual
20/20 VisionGIS SoftwareTrustworthy
Hand/Eye CoordinationAir ChiselsCommunication
Multi-Limb CoordinationVentilatorsDetail Orientated
EnduranceFire SheltersTeam Player
Manlift to 200 lbsAir SamplersEnergetic
NimbleAutomated External Defibrillators (AED)Quick-Thinking & Decision Making
Depth PerceptionFire AxesDetermined
Peripheral VisionLaddersHigh-Risk Behavior Identification
Mental ToughnessPry Bars "Jaws of Life"Leadership
Run an 8-minute mileFire and Rescue VehiclesStress Tolerant
Cleared Medical RecordFire ExtinguishersSituational Awareness

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Qualifications/Certifications associated with Firefighters

Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT)Nationally Certified First Responder (CFP)Certificate In Fire Science
Certified ParamedicBachelor's Fire Science DegreeAssociate Fire Science Degree
EMT CertificationCPRFire Ground Safety Certificate
NREMT-P Certification (National Registry Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic)Forestry Fire Prevention Specialist CertificationAdvanced Commercial Driver's License

Professional Information on Firefighters

Sectors: Emergency Response, Conservation, Medical, Humanitarian, Law Enforcement, Disaster Management, Emergency Services

Career Type: Training, Supervisory, Servicing, Rescue, Evacuation, First Aid, Emergency Patroler, Crowd Controller
Person type:  Emergency Officer, Supervisor, Rescuer, Responder, Safety Professional, Trainer, First Aid Professional, Fire Investigator
Education levels: Post School Diplomas, Accreditations, Certifications, Licenses, Associate Degrees
Salary indication: The average salary for a Fire Fighter is $47,868 *(Payscale)

Labor market: Subject to an increase of  5% between 2018 and 2028
Organizations: Federal, State, Local Government, NGO's, NPO's Commercial, Industrial, Manufacturing, Airports, Conservation Agencies, Medical Response Agencies