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Career Profile: First-Line Supervisors of Firefighting and Prevention Workers

Directly supervise and coordinate activities of workers engaged in firefighting and fire prevention and control.

Salary and Outlook

According to the US Department of Labor, there are 70,200 people employed as first-line supervisors of firefighting and prevention workers in the United States. The median annual salary is $78,900. Entry level employees earn approximately $43,640 per year and senior employees earn approximately $129,470 per year.

Estimates do not include other potential benefits such as health insurance, overtime pay, or retirement benefits that may be offered by employers.

Job Duties

  • Assign firefighters to jobs at strategic locations to facilitate rescue of persons and maximize application of extinguishing agents.
  • Provide emergency medical services as required, and perform light to heavy rescue functions at emergencies.
  • Assess nature and extent of fire, condition of building, danger to adjacent buildings, and water supply status to determine crew or company requirements.
  • Communicate fire details to superiors, subordinates, or interagency dispatch centers, using two-way radios.
  • Serve as a working leader of an engine, hand, helicopter, or prescribed fire crew of three or more firefighters.
  • Instruct and drill fire department personnel in assigned duties, including firefighting, medical care, hazardous materials response, fire prevention, and related subjects.
  • Maintain fire suppression equipment in good condition, checking equipment periodically to ensure that it is ready for use.
  • Evaluate the performance of assigned firefighting personnel.
  • Direct the training of firefighters, assigning of instructors to training classes, and providing of supervisors with reports on training progress and status.
  • Perform maintenance and minor repairs on firefighting equipment, including vehicles, and write and submit proposals to modify, replace, and repair equipment.
  • Schedule employee work assignments and set work priorities.
  • Inspect and test new and existing fire protection systems, fire detection systems, and fire safety equipment to ensure that they are operating properly.
  • Study and interpret fire safety codes to establish procedures for issuing permits to handle hazardous or flammable substances.
  • Recommend equipment modifications or new equipment purchases.
  • Supervise and participate in the inspection of properties to ensure that they are in compliance with applicable fire codes, ordinances, laws, regulations, and standards.
  • Monitor fire suppression expenditures to ensure that they are necessary and reasonable.
  • Participate in creating fire safety guidelines and evacuation schemes for nonresidential buildings.
  • Maintain required maps and records.
  • Drive crew carriers to transport firefighters to fire sites.
  • Inspect stations, uniforms, equipment, or recreation areas to ensure compliance with safety standards, taking corrective action as necessary.
  • Evaluate fire station procedures to ensure efficiency and enforcement of departmental regulations.
  • Direct firefighters in station maintenance duties, and participate in these duties.
  • Recommend personnel actions related to disciplinary procedures, performance, leaves of absence, and grievances.
  • Perform administrative duties, such as compiling and maintaining records, completing forms, preparing reports, or composing correspondence.
  • Direct investigation of cases of suspected arson, hazards, and false alarms and submit reports outlining findings.

Career List

Job Outlook


Total Current Jobs:
70,200
Annual Openings:
5,300
Increase in Openings by 2030:
8%
Annual Salary Range:
$43,640 - $129,470
Education Requirements:
Some college