How To Become A Firefighter In Australia: A Complete Guide

Students want to know how to become firefighters in Australia, including the recruitment process, and salary.


Do you find saving lives and helping others extremely satisfying? If yes, a firefighter career is ideal for you.


As the most rewarding and demanding career, a firefighter's job involves much more than just controlling and extinguishing fires.


Firefighters also respond to other emergencies, such as search and rescue marine or motor accidents, administering first aid, and much more.


Read this post below to learn how to become a firefighter in different states in Australia, how much money they get paid (salary), the recruitment process, and much more.



1. What Does A Firefighter Do?


A firefighter or fireman is a highly skilled individual who works to combat and extinguish fires. They also act as an emergency medical technician (EMTs), participate in search and rescue operations, and educate the community regarding fire safety. 


A firefighter is the first official always seen during fires, floods, storms, vehicle accidents, or other emergencies. That is why they are also known as "first responders.'



2. Firefighter Responsibilities in Australia


Although you may have reviewed sufficient information regarding the responsibilities of firefighters in Australia, most applicants often need help defining their actual roles and responsibilities. 



When it comes to fire services in Australia, there are three different types:


  • Salaried and urban

  • Government land with both volunteer and salaried opportunities

  • Volunteer and Rural


Each firefighter organisation or group in Australia has its own goals, history, culture, and mission. To be part of a group or organisation, consider if you want to work as a volunteer or be paid.


Remember, only some fighters are going to fight a fire. Most of the groups are a part of more significant communities and organisations. It means you might be working to educate people about fire safety or help communities discover the best ways to prevent or reduce the risk of fires. 


The firefighters in Australia are also called upon to do things like:


  • Inspecting the after-effects of structures or bushfires.

  • Safeguard people, environment, and property.

  • Carry out fire hydrant maintenance and inspections.

  • Risk assessments.

  • Building inspections for giving office approval or for safety purposes. 

  • Working in rescue operations in marine disasters, auto accidents, or any rural issues. 

  • Disaster response.

  • Administering first aid.

  • Evacuating and rescuing people in life-threatening situations.

  • Attend drills, demonstrations, rescue classes, and training activities for emergencies. 

  • Free occupants from crashed vehicles.



3. How To Get Prepared To Become A Firefighter?


If you are looking for a career as a firefighter in Australia, you need to work on the following aspects.


  • Start working on your leadership skills, fitness, and resilience. You can do this by participating in a team sport or volunteering in your local community.


  • Look for an opportunity if you can work as a volunteer with your local fire station. Many places offer youth and cadet programs to help you experience that can make your application closer to getting approved.


  • Discuss the job role with a firefighter to know if you could do the job. As this job is full of responsibilities, you may feel stressed out at times. However, keep in mind this role is quite rewarding.



4. How To Become A Firefighter in New South Wales (NSW)?


Fire and Rescue, New South Wales firefighters must be ready to help anyone, anytime, anywhere. To become a firefighter in NSW, a candidate has to undergo a 13-week recruit course that involves theoretical and practical subjects.


Besides this, there are physical tests such as using face masks in a confined space, breathing tools, working at the top of the ladder, and carrying and assembling apparatus. You also need to pass medical and fitness tests.


This rewarding and challenging job is available in permanent (full-time) and on-call firefighter positions. However, you have to be eligible to qualify for any of the positions.



Eligibility to Become a Firefighter in NSW:



To learn more about becoming a firefighter in NSW, visit the website.



5. How To Become A Firefighter In Queensland (QLD)?


To become a firefighter in Queensland, the firefighter must have mental, emotional, and physical strength. The recruitment process of firefighters in Queensland can be pretty competitive. 


Therefore, it is vital to give the best shot. It includes intense and sustained physical activity, working in confined spaces with no or poor visibility, and working in hot and humid environments.


Above all these mental and physical demands, QFES needs firefighters to have high mental strength, physical fitness, skill, and powerful commitment to their role. The selection process for assessing these traits is highly competitive.



Eligibility to Become a Firefighter in QLD:


To apply for Fire and Rescue firefighter in Queensland, a candidate should meet the following criteria:


  • Must have a valid C-class Australian driver's license with two years of driving experience. 

  • Medically, mentally, and physically fit.

  • Permanent resident of Australia or New Zealand.

  • Minimum two years of full-time paid work experience.

  • Completed Year 12 or an equal qualification recognised by QFES.

  • Eligible to work with Children Blue Card from Blue Card Services.


To learn more about the selection process and other details about becoming a firefighter in Queensland, visit the website.



6. How To Become A Firefighter In South Australia (SA)


The South Australian Metropolitan Fire Service (MFS) provides effective and efficient emergency services. To join MFS as a firefighter, a candidate has to meet the highest standard of excellence in providing emergency services.


You can apply for two profiles for firefighter jobs in South Australia - full-time firefighters and retained firefighters. Regardless of which type you opt for, make sure you are eligible for it.



Eligibility to Become a Firefighter in South Australia:



  • Both men and women can apply.

  • Must have a valid C-class Australian driver's license with two years of driving experience

  • Candidates should be community-minded, intelligent, fit, and healthy.

  • Medically, mentally, and physically fit.

  • Permanent resident of Australia or New Zealand.

  • Proof of birth, address, citizenship, and residency. 


To get a brief overview of the recruitment process, visit the Government website of MFS.



7. How To Become A Firefighter In Victoria (VIC)?


If you genuinely desire to serve the community, you can opt for a career as a firefighter in Victoria. Fire Rescue Victoria constantly looks for candidates looking for jobs with diverse experiences and skills.


However, the candidates must be mentally, physically, and medically fit to become a firefighter in Victoria. Besides this, one should have good interpersonal and communication skills too. Check out the eligibility to become a firefighter in Victoria.



Eligibility to Become a Firefighter in Victoria:


  • Must be a permanent resident of New Zealand or Australia

  • Must have a driver's license by January 1, 2022. A green probationary license is also acceptable

  • You must comply with driver history and criminal history policies. 

  • Medical clearance is mandatory from their doctor before undertaking the physical assessment phase.

  • Must undergo a National Police Record Check.

  • After receiving an employment offer, they must acquire a Heavy Rigid license. 


Visit the website to learn about all aspects of becoming a firefighter in Victoria.



8. How To Become Firefighter In Western Australia (WA)?


The Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) is one of Australia's most competitive fire services. It has conducted many variations of recruitment of around 1200-3500 applications.


The department accepts applications from women, Torres Strait Islanders, Australian Aboriginals, and people from diverse backgrounds.


If you want to be a frontline in firefighting, sea rescue, and emergency services in Western Australia, ensure you meet the following eligibility.



Eligibility to Become a Firefighter in Western Australia:


  • Permanent resident of Australia or New Zealand.

  • Hold a valid C Class manual driver's license from West Australia.

  • Ability to acquire a West Australian or National Heavy Rigid (HR-B) driver's license within two months of commencing. 

  • Must have a Provide First Aid Certificate HLTAID003 (issues in last three years).

  • A satisfactory National Police Certificate.

  • Working with Children check.

  • Advanced First Aid Certificate (HLTAID006).

  • Advanced Resuscitation Certificate (HLTAID007).


For more information about becoming a firefighter in Western Australia, visit the government website.



9. How To Become A Firefighter In Tasmania (TAS)?


The Tasmania Fire Service uses merit principles to make the selection. It means the choice depends on comparing the work-related qualities of the position and the individuals. The Tasmania Fire Service is a dynamic place to work.


Firefighters must perform various rewarding and challenging tasks, such as attending emergencies like bushfires. Suppose you want to join this embarking career. In that case, TFS is the right platform to start your journey as a firefighter in Tasmania.



Eligibility to Become a Firefighter in Tasmania (Tas)


  • Meet the fitness and medical needs of TFS,

  • Able to work in confined spaces and heights.

  • The Head of State Service is performed a pre-employment check before taking up the appointment. These checks include sexual offences, fire and arson, violent crimes, deception, and dishonesty.

  • Good written and oral communication skills.

  • Ability to work safely and maintain a safe workplace.

  • Ability to work as a team in different situations.


If you want more information on becoming a firefighter in Tasmania, visit the official website.



10. Different Fire Fighters Rank you can Apply for



  • Firefighter

  • Probationary firefighter

  • Captain

  • Driver Engineer

  • Lieutenant

  • Assistant Chief

  • Battalion Chief

  • Fire Chief



11. How To Become Volunteer Firefighter In Australia


Australia is heavily dependent on volunteer firefighters to protect its communities and homes. If you are willing to become a volunteer firefighter in the country. In that case, you can submit your interest with the local volunteer brigade, or you can also visit your local fire station. 


Your application success depends mainly on the vacancies available. Success depends on your commitment, ability to take risks, and skillset. You will be either placed in operational or non-operational roles. If you want to get involved in fighting massive bushfires, it requires around 6-12 months of training.


You can volunteer and get various opportunities to learn valuable and new skills. There are many opportunities and roles available that you can volunteer to develop new skills and explore interests. 


Besides this, you can also join The ACT Rural Fire Service training packages to become a village firefighter, advanced firefighter, crew leader, and division commander.



12. Firefighters' Average Salary In Australia


The pay figures of firefighters in Australia vary according to the position and area of work. There are several exceptions and variations regarding firefighters' remuneration in Australia.


A firefighter in Australia earns nearly about 52,500 AUD per year. The salaries range from 24,200 AUD to 83,500 AUD, including transport, housing, and other benefits. Firefighters' wages vary significantly based on gender, location, experience, and skills.


A firefighter with less than two years experience makes around 27,400 AUD annually. On the other hand, an experienced firefighter with 2-5 years of experience can earn about 36,600 AUD per year.


If the experience level is between 5 to 10 years, the salary would be approximately 54,100 AUD per year.


To know more about firefighters' average salary in Australia, visit the website.



13. Things You Should Know About Firefighter Jobs in Australia


Whether you qualify for a firefighter job or planning to step ahead with the application, these are essential aspects you should know:



Annual Leaves


Firefighters get nine weeks of annual leave every year. This leave is taken in two sections per year and varies according to location or shift. 





Firefighters must join the ESSS- Emergency Service Superannuation Scheme, a defined-benefit superannuation fund. They must contribute according to the rate you nominate on your superannuation form.



Public Holidays


Firefighters have to work throughout the year and public holidays are no exception.



Parental Leave


After a year of regular service, firefighters, in association with their partners, can avail of paid and unpaid parental leave on a sharing basis based on the adoption or birth of their child. 


  • Maternity leave - There are 14 weeks of paid leave, and unpaid leave is up to 90 weeks on a shared basis


  • Paternity Leave - There are one week or four shifts, and unpaid leave is up to 103 weeks on a shared basis



14. Wrapping Up The Post


Firefighters are some of the most hard-working people whose job is full of risks and hazards. Unlike other professionals, they must be on the edge of their seats around the clock. However, still, thousands of applicants line up to get a chance to become firefighters. 


Hopefully, you get all your answers in the article on becoming a firefighter in Australia, the basic requirements, and more.


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