How Do I Become a Firefighter?



Firefighting is a very fulfilling career with many rewards. Like many careers, becoming a firefighter begins with a foundation in education. At the City of Rocklin Fire Department you must possess a valid State of California Firefighter 1 Certification, and a State of California Paramedic license to be considered for appointment to the position of Firefighter. You must also be 18 years old, a high school graduate (or equivalent), be a citizen of the United States, and possess a valid California driver’s license.

The hiring process is very competitive so these minimums should be considered a starting point. Firefighter candidates also face very thorough background investigations and medical examinations – so staying out of trouble and in excellent physical condition should be considered prerequisites as well. Many new firefighters have degrees in fire science or related fields and coursework in state certification programs already underway – a requirement for future promotional opportunities.

Job Duties

Under supervision, takes direction, and performs as a team member, all operations necessary to ensure the confinement and extinguishment of fires or other hazardous conditions, and maintains a state of readiness to respond to emergency calls. This includes, but is not limited to, the following duties and responsibilities:

Responds to various emergency calls including structural and environmental fires, traffic collisions, hazardous material spills, and medical aids. Connects and lays hose lines, selects and operates hose nozzles according to conditions and supervisors directions, directs hose water onto fire, or provides back up by feeding hose line; operates other fire extinguishing appliances. Performs search and rescue procedures, utilizing hand and power tools, hydraulic tools, portable saws, power generators, ropes, webbing, and similar equipment.

Performs ventilation or entry procedures by opening up walls and other structures with the use of hand or power tools; raises, lowers, and climbs ladders to access buildings or rescue persons; make forcible entry into, and enters burning buildings or other locations. Provides medical aid to injured persons according to scope of practice that is allowed by local Emergency Medical Services or departmental authority, operates any and all related emergency medical equipment that may be provided and is allowed within your scope of practice. Performs salvage and overhaul procedures to protect property by using salvage covers, brooms, mops, shovel, and similar equipment.

Participates in drills, demonstrations, and courses in firefighting techniques, medical aid, heavy rescue, hazardous materials, equipment maintenance and related areas; studies local conditions and factors affecting fire operations; studies departmental policy and safety procedures; studies inspection regulations and prevention rules; maintains physical fitness and health.

Provides business inspections and performs follow up procedures to insure compliance to Fire Codes, National Electric Code, Uniform Building Codes, state, local and regional codes; participates in local school fire prevention programs by presenting or preparing presentations; performs station tours, and other public education activities to promote fire safety and public awareness; completes appropriate paperwork.