Frequent question: Is it hard to become a wildland firefighter?

Securing a federal wildland firefighting job can be incredibly difficult, and you may not get hired right away. In the case that you don’t land the federal position that you want, consider being open to working at a private company instead.

How long does it take to become a wildland firefighter?

Selected applicants will attend a 3,000 hour on-the-job learning program, which includes a two month-long residential firefighting academy at the Wildland Fire Training Center in McClellan, California. Apprentices will be paid and all costs of training will be covered by the Forest Service.

Is becoming a wildland firefighter hard?

While some wildland firefighters work year-round and some work only during the fire season, the work is always strenuous and positions are always highly competitive. Prospective workers can often increase their chances of securing a job by earning a certificate or degree in fire science.

Can you make a career out of wildland firefighting?

Most entry-level wildland firefighters are hired as a GS-3 forestry technician, and you typically need six months of general experience, such as volunteer firefighting. … To earn a GS-5 level position, one year of specialized experience or a bachelor’s degree related to the occupation is required.

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Is wildland firefighting a full time job?

Wildland firefighters may be required to work long hours in challenging and changing conditions, such as high temperatures and steep terrain. This job does have many rewards, including the opportunity to work in some of the most beautiful places in the country and create friendships that last a lifetime.

How many wildland firefighters died in 2020?

2020 ended, to date, with 96 firefighter on-duty deaths.

How much do Smokejumpers make?

A smokejumper earns around $16.00 per hour while a smokejumper foreman earns about $24.00 per hour. Smokejumpers are paid nothing extra for making parachute jumps; however, they do receive hazard pay equivalent to 25 percent of their base pay when working on an uncontrolled wildfire.

How much do hotshots get paid?

As a federal worker, a Hotshot Firefighter earns an average of $13 per hour during off-season. The pay increases during the peak fire season where they work up to 16 hours, sometimes even extending up to 48-64 hours. They earn an average salary of $40,000 during a six-month season (including overtime and hazard pay).

What certifications do I need to be a wildland firefighter?

Essential Information

Required Education Typically, high school diploma at minimum; associate’s and bachelor’s degrees in fire science are available
Other Requirements Most firefighters must be certified as EMTs; voluntary certification available through the National Wildfire Suppression Association

How many months do wildland firefighters work?

If you’ve ever met a seasonal wildland firefighter then you will probably know that many of them are employed just for 6-9 months of the year to fight fires (during the wildfire season) and then they have months of time off at their disposal.

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Do wildland firefighters make hazard pay?

In addition to overtime, firefighters earn Hazard Pay when fighting fires. Hazard Pay is an additional 25 percent of your base hourly wage.

Do wildland firefighters get paid overtime?

A. Yes, firefighters do receive overtime pay. Generally, a firefighter may work up to 16 hours a day while fighting a fire. Their overtime pay rate is listed on the Office of Personnel Management’s General Schedule Pay Tables.

Are wildland firefighters in demand?

Career Outlook for Forest Firefighters

Demand for Forest Firefighters is expected to go up, with an expected 65,510 new jobs filled by 2018. This represents an annual increase of 2.71 percent over the next few years.

When can I apply for wildland firefighting jobs?

Wildland firefighter positions are generally advertised in the off-season (Oct-Dec) and hired as fire season approaches (Jan-Mar). Individuals seeking employment should think about applying by Sept/Oct as many announcements close in January.

How competitive is wildland firefighting?

As previously stated, the field of wildland firefighting is highly competitive. In a sea of hundreds of applicants for a single position, sending out a resume is often not enough to land an interview.

Tame a raging fire