How to Become a Firefighter in Missouri
Firefighters are responsible for controlling fires at various places and putting them out. They are among the first to respond any time there is an emergency and serious danger is being posed to people and infrastructure.
Apart from this, the day-to-day job of a firefighter involves performing fire drills for different kinds of emergency fires, writing detailed field reports and learning about the latest fire safety mechanisms, etc. If firefighting in Missouri is something that you intend to pursue as a viable career option, this guide will help you get started.
Firefighting Careers in Missouri
Following are the major careers that firefighters in Missouri can enjoy.
- Volunteer Firefighter
- Emergency Medical Technician (Fire Department)
- Industrial Fire Protection Specialist
- Fire Investigator
Requirements to Become a Firefighter in Missouri
Following are the requirements that aspiring firefighters in Missouri have to meet.
- Must be at least 18 years old.
- Have to be a legal citizen of the United States, whether by birth or through naturalization.
- Must possess a High School Diploma (HSD) or an equivalent GED certificate.
- Hold a valid Missouri driving license.
- Undertake and clear the Candidate Physical Agility Test (CPAT).
- Get screened for drug usage.
- Must not be a convicted felon nor have any serious misdemeanor charges against their name during the last 5 years.
- Have 20/30 vision or better (with or without glasses/contact lenses).
- Some fire departments in Missouri make it mandatory for all their firefighters to hold a paramedic license or obtain an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) certification within a year of becoming employed as a trained staff member. However, this is not a statewide requirement yet.
How Long Does It Take to Become a Firefighter in Missouri?
After submitting an employment application with any fire department in Missouri, you will have to go through the testing process which includes a written evaluation as well as physical tests and drug screening.
The next step is to either volunteer with your local fire service to gain experience or enroll for training at the Fire Academy. This training program normally takes about 16 weeks (3-4 months). Once done with training, you will need to qualify the Missouri firefighter exam to be employed by the State Fire Department. Hiring is subject to the availability of positions.
How Much Does a Firefighter Make in Missouri?
As per data available from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a firefighter in Missouri can make an annual mean wage of $51,100. This is as of May, 2018.
Career Outlook for Firefighters in Missouri
From 2018 to 2028, firefighter employment opportunities are expected to grow nationally by 5%. This is as per information available with the US BLS. Missouri is one of the better paying states for firefighters. So, the career outlook for firefighters in the Show-Me State is quite encouraging for the coming years.