Congratulations on receiving an invitation to the firefighter interview!
Due to a massive demand of firefighters, 100 or more candidates compete for a single job opening. Thus, the only way to crack the interview is being honest with your answers and keeping them to the point. Before appearing for the interview and giving the best response to volunteer firefighter interview questions, it’s important to do thorough research about the company, match your skills to the job description, and stay calm.
In this article, we have covered some most common questions related to fire science and how to answer them.
Typical Firefighter Interview Questions
Question 1: Tell me about yourself.
Answer: Whether you are a fresher or an experienced firefighter, you can expect this question from the interviewer. Most of the candidates tend to utter their chronological work history in response to this question, which is not a perfect answer. Instead, you must focus on your strengths and how they relate to your job role. If possible, give examples to support your answer.
Question 2: Why do you want to pursue your career in firefighting? (This is one of the basic entry-level firefighter interview questions.)
Answer: You can tell about your dreams that you had in your childhood, how you feel about helping others, and the positive aspects that you see in this job. Talk about your desire to keep your community safe.
Note: Don’t get over emotional or dramatic while answering this question; however, you can showcase a bit of excitement.
Question 3: What education and training do you have for this profession?
Answer: Speak with enthusiasm about your experience as a volunteer firefighter. In case, you have not worked as a volunteer firefighter, tell about your participation in the competition or courses that simulated the work environment of a real firefighter job. Shed light on both positive and challenging facets of this job.
Question 4: Has anyone from your family ever worked or is working on this position?
Answer: Tell what your family member told you about this job that inspired to pursue a career in firefighting. Also, say what made that person your role model. You can share your experience about what you feel when your family member talks about his/her job experience.
Question 5: Have you worked as a firefighter before? Elaborate on this.
Answer: Frame a compelling true story about your work experience and put it forward in a passionate manner. Tell how you saved any property or someone’s life. Let the interviewer know that you are pleased with your profession and grateful for the opportunities being provided to serve the community and bring a difference in the lives of people.
Question 6: According to you, what’s the critical aspect of a firefighting job?
Answer: The most important aspect of being a firefighter is saving human life and property during the fire and other emergencies. A firefighter must have quick decision-making skills, emotional stability, team spirit, and ability to follow orders of their supervisors without fail.
Note: Answer this question around all the points mentioned above.
Question 7: Describe how you handled the situation of conflict with one of your colleagues.
Answer: Conflict has no place in the firefighting profession. By asking this question, the interviewer intends to know how good you are as a team player. Your answer must reflect that you always avoid conflicts at the workplace and act in a courteous and affable manner to all your colleagues.
Question 8: Have you ever given first aid to an injured person?
Answer: Through this question, the interviewer wants to judge how efficiently you manage and how you behave during the emergencies. Narrate an instance when you acted calmly while providing the first aid to a wounded person. You can describe the step by step process of giving the first aid.
Question 9: Have you ever felt pressure in your fire science career? Describe the situation.
Answer: Your answer must reflect that you don’t get panicked and can work calmly even under extreme work pressure involving mental and physical distress. Tell that you take work pressure as a motivation rather than an impediment. Your positive response to this question will give the interviewer a better idea of your attitude and personality.
Question 10: In your view, what makes a good fireman?
Answer: Along with passion, a well-rounded firefighter must have many traits such as flexibility, adaptability, team player, dedication towards the job, physical fitness, good communication and problem-solving skills, quick decision-making skills, physical fitness, and integrity.
Note: Respond to the question throwing light on all the qualities listed above.
Question 11: How long would you want to render your services as a firefighter?
Answer: By asking this question, the interviewer wants to check your stability in this profession. The age of retirement for the firefighters in the USA is 57 years; however, you can take early retirement. Therefore, craft your answer considering your present age. You can also talk about your long-term career plans in the fire science field.
Question 12: Did you ever get the chance to work outside of your job role to solve a problem?
Answer: With this question, the interviewer wants to evaluate how comfortable you feel when given additional responsibilities other than your job role. Craft a beautiful story based on your real work experience that reflects your flexibility and adaptability. If you have never worked outside your job role, then show your willingness and readiness to shoulder more responsibilities if you get a chance in the future.
Question 13: Why do you want to leave your current employer?
Answer: Avoid badmouthing your current employer and focus on the positive side of your current job. The interviewer wants to ensure that you are not leaving your post because of stressful working relations, poor performance, or just because you hate your boss or job. Your answer must reflect the right reasons such as career growth, more challenges, a better opportunity, etc.
Question 14: Where do you see yourself in 5/10 years?
Answer: The interviewer asks this question to check how committed you are towards your career. However, there is no specific answer to this question, and the response depends on the individual’s career aspirations, but your reply must illustrate your ambition and passion towards your profession.
Question 15: What challenges the fire services are facing in the present scenario?
Answer: A thoughtful response to this indicates your keen interest in the field of fire science and your thorough knowledge of present situations. Along with talking about the challenges, you can also put forward your suggestion to overcome these issues. A solution-oriented approach to a problem is a critical trait that every employer looks for in prospective employees.
Question 16: Is there anything that would obstruct you to render effective services as a firefighter?
Answer: Be honest in your reply. Don’t hesitate to discuss your medical conditions and other limitations with the interviewer. As several desk jobs and education programs are available in the field of fire science, you can be a part of the firefighting team even if you give an affirmative answer to this question.
Question 17: What is your biggest weakness?
Answer: Your answer must be well-thought-out and not be a cliche. Put a positive spin on your weak points and illustrate any weakness that you have learned to overcome.
Question 18: What did you learn from the greatest failure of your life?
Answer: Don’t reveal any major mishap that highlights your regret or discontent with your life. Instead, emphasize on a smaller yet significant incident and how it turned you to a better professional.
Question 19: What sets you apart from other applicants for this job position?
Answer: Reveal your qualifications and focus on what makes you unique for the job position. You can give reasons like you have diverse and extensive experience to offer, ability to get along with others, need a little direction from supervisors, and possess an incredible passion for fire science.
Question 20: What motivates you to perform better in your job?
Answer: Your answer must demonstrate your positive attributes. Instead of giving a generic and vague response, put forward some examples (if possible) to provide the interviewer with an insight into your qualities. Focus on excellent work ethics rather than your personal goal while responding to this question.
Question 21: According to you, what are the primary job responsibilities of a firefighter?
Answer: The interviewer asks this question to determine if you are acquainted with the duties and responsibilities associated with a firefighter. Highlight all the essential tasks such as rescue people, pets and properties from fire, fire protection, fire prevention, fire safety, participation in educational programs, etc.
Question 22: How will you manage long working hours?
Answer: Firefighters can be called any time during emergencies and they are supposed to report immediately. Tell the interviewer how supportive your friends and family are, and you have a well-crafted plan to handle the unconventional and unpredictable shifts and work hours.
Question 23: What would you do to this department/job if hired?
Answer: A proper research about the organization/department, its goal, and work culture is a must to respond to this question. Frame your answer keeping in mind what you are expected to do as a firefighter. You can also summarize your previous accomplishments and tell them to the interviewer in brief.
Question 24: What salary do you expect?
Answer: Avoid giving an exact number; instead reveal your commitment and dedication to the job. Moreover, based on your research, you can provide a broad range. You can say like, “I am expecting a salary that will help me bear the high living cost of New York City.”
Question 25: Do you want to asking anything from us?
Answer: This question gives you an opportunity to evaluate whether the job is a good fit for you or not. Ask questions related to your research about the company. This will give an impression to the interviewer that you have done homework and have a keen interest in this job.
Some More Firefighter Oral Interview Sample Questions
- What do you think is the least interesting aspect of being a firefighter?
- What is the best part of working as a firefighter?
- What is your biggest strength that makes you the best fit for this job profile?
- Have you ever suggested higher standards or improvement in work process/methods in your previous job?
- How will you utilize your spare time while on duty?
Firefighter Oral Interview Scenario Questions
- What would you do with an order that, according to you, is wrong and would put you in a needless hazard?
- What would you do if your senior firefighters give you two different orders at the same time?
- Suppose you are going on your way to home and you see an unconscious person by the side of the road, what would you do?
- During a fire extinguishing operation, what would be your reaction when you notice your fellow fighter stealing something?
- What will you do to help a team member who has stuck inside a fire?
Firefighter Behavioral Interview Questions
- Have you ever made any mistake? If yes, how did you rectify it?
- Will you intentionally disobey your supervisors/seniors? Why?
- Tell me an instance when you had to counter an emergency.
- Tell me about an instance when you committed a mistake while using rescue equipment. How did you correct it?
Fire Captain Promotion Interview Questions
- Explain an incident in which you had to handle the furious citizen.
- Have you conducted and coordinated public education seminars and fire inspections at shopping centers, town meetings or local fire schools?
- How will you motivate the firemen to stay geared up to mitigate fires or other emergencies?
- How will you ensure that emergency procedures are efficiently documented and reported?
- As a Fire Captain, what will be your responsibilities?
Fire Marshal/Firefighter Chief Interview Questions
- How would your colleagues describe you as a Fire Chief?
- How would you explain a typical day in your current job as Firefighter Chief?
- Tell me your most significant professional achievement.
- What parameters would you consider in an individual while delegating the duty?
Wildland Firefighter Interview Questions
- In your previous firefighting jobs, what type of water pumps have you used?
- Elaborate on your leadership skills.
- Describe a complicated project on which you have worked.
- How do you and your family members look at your work schedule?