Are you expecting to appear for a firefighter interview soon? Well, preparing for the process will help you ace it. Because firefighting is a challenging job, which requires strength and commitment, it is possible that you will be asked tough questions to gauge your abilities.
The interviewer will ask you some general questions at the beginning, then, specific ones pertaining to your firefighting qualifications, experiences, skills, and knowledge.
Also, they may ask some situational questions to figure out your critical thinking skills.
Take a look at the following set of 30 interview questions and answers for a firefighter position:
30 Common Interview Questions and Answers for Firefighter
1. Tell me a little bit about yourself.
I am a highly alert firefighter with 5+ years of successful track record. My inspiration to work as a firefighter began in my early teens when I discovered what the work was all about. Since then, I have done all I could to reach my goal of becoming one.
2. What are some of the duties that you have performed in the role of a firefighter?
As a firefighter, I have performed many duties which include using equipment to fight fires. Specifically, my work includes responding to calls to fight the fire and extinguishing them before it ravages people and places. In addition, I have been busy saving people from fires, ensuring that they are transported to safe areas. Mitigating chemical spills, and preventing fire damage by developing and conducting educational programs is also part of my work.
3. What are some of the skills that you possess which make you an excellent person to hire as a firefighter?
I am a physically strong individual, who knows firefighting work inside out. I am skilled in planning and executing rescues, and can go the extra mile to save people. I also possess the ability to prevent fire damage by conducting surveys and inspections. Additionally, I am competent in ensuring optimal equipment operations by timely and efficiently completing maintenance on them.
4. What do you like most about this work?
The fact that no two days are similar is what I love about this work. Every day is a new one and provides me with the opportunity to learn more.
5. What do you dislike about this work?
This work is amazing, as it allows me to help people. However, when I cannot help someone during an emergency, that makes me sad.
6. How do you handle conflict in the workplace?
Firefighters are fighting conflicts on a daily basis, but these are usually not amongst themselves. Since we work in a high-tension environment, we concentrate more on the work that we have to do, rather than indulging in problems between ourselves.
7. Have you ever done something outstanding?
As a firefighter, I have done many outstanding deeds. But the one that is close to my heart is when I saved the life of a 2-year-old boy when 3 firefighters had given up. I managed to kill the fire around him and picked him up before jumping onto the safety net.
8. What do you think is the most important quality in a firefighter?
I feel that a firefighter needs to be completely dedicated to the work. Dedication in supporting their team, and serving the community is most important when working as a firefighter.
9. How do you react in adverse situations?
When faced with adverse circumstances, I have always been very practical. During emergencies, I automatically end up channelizing my energy towards assisting. This way, I do not end up feeling overwhelmed.
10. How do you handle situations where you don’t know the answer?
I have no issues asking for assistance when I am unsure about something. After all, my indecisiveness or lack of knowledge can be dangerous for others.
11. What is your biggest strength?
I believe that my biggest strength is my ability to handle adverse situations by exercising excellent judgment.
12. What is your biggest weakness?
My biggest weakness is perhaps my willingness to do more than I can physically or emotionally manage.
13. How would you deal with an angry citizen?
My first instinct would be to make sure that the citizen in question is safe. I would then listen to them calmly, and try to resolve what is bothering them to the best of my abilities.
14. How does your family manage your schedule as a firefighter?
I get three days off which I dedicate to my family. But they do understand if I am called for a mission even in those 3 days. After all, my work is very important, and they understand my priorities.
15. Do you think our country’s public education programs need to be improved?
I feel that fire hazard issues need to be communicated to people more openly. With so much technology being used everywhere, and the corresponding wiring hotspots, fire hazards have become quite a norm. We need to tell people how to prevent them.
16. How do you think the role of firefighters will change in the future?
I feel that technology will soon take over most of this work. However, firefighting needs a human touch as well, which is why I feel that technology such as robots will work in an assistantship role. They will help firefighters fight fires by reducing extinguishing time. I also see technology predicting fire hazards before they become dangerous.
17. What is the most challenging part of working as a firefighter?
I feel that making the right decision at the right time is the most challenging part of working as a firefighter. It is quite difficult to make on the spot decisions, especially when someone’s life is in danger.
18. How would you react if you saw a fellow firefighter doing something nefarious?
I would first approach my coworker to verify what I saw. If I am right in what I saw, and there is no reasonable explanation for what they did, I would report them to the supervisor.
19. What is your relationship with the local police?
I am on great terms with the police and have often worked with the department to perform investigations.
20. Do you think regular fire drills are important? Why or why not?
Yes, I feel that regular fire drills are very important, as they keep firefighters on their toes, and also make them understand the importance of being vigilant.
21. If you had a choice to save a child or an elderly person, which one would you choose to save, and why?
To be honest, this is a difficult moral question to answer. Saving someone on the basis of their age is not a criterion. I would first save the person in closest proximity to me, and then move to the next one.
22. How good are your investigation skills?
I am a thorough individual, who has been chosen by detectives time and again to help with crime scene investigations. My expertise in investigating post-fire scenes is above par of that of my peers.
23. What motivates you?
I would say challenge. I thrive on challenges and draw a very fulfilling sense of achievement when I accomplish difficult tasks.
24. What does preventative maintenance mean to you?
Preventative maintenance is very important when you are working as a firefighter. This is because when a call comes in, one does not have time, nor the opportunity to check if the equipment is working. Ensuring that all firefighting tools and equipment remain in perfect working order at all times is very important.
25. Are you up to work for several hours without breaks in emergencies?
Definitely! That’s what this job is all about. I have good physical stamina and am well aware that working without breaks for several hours is something quite routine in this profession.
26. What are your skills as far as post-fire administrative work is concerned?
In my present place of work, I am solely responsible for maintaining post-work logs. I am exceptionally skilled in handling administrative work such as preparing and submitting detailed incident reports to the management.
27. In your opinion, how important is it to familiarize yourself with the city where you work?
I feel that it is imperative to know all the ways around your jurisdiction so that you don’t have to look for ways to get to a fire scene, thereby wasting time to save lives and property.
28. If we decide to hire you, when can you join us?
I can join you in 30 days, which is when my notice period will be up.
29. Where do you see yourself in 5 years from now?
I see myself working as a firefighting crew supervisor within the next 5 years.
30. Do you have any questions for me?
I am interested in knowing about the firefighting protocols that you follow at your facility.