How To Become a Firefighter in New Jersey

New Jersey residents have good reasons to take great pride in their state’s nickname – “Garden State”, and the motto – “Land of Liberty and Prosperity.” New Jersey is not only the 2nd richest state but also one of the most densely populated US states. Naturally, there are many cases that proves there is a vital need to prevent the widest disaster, fire, that claims the lives of the people who can afford to reside in close proximity to wealthy company. One case is in late 1934 when cruise liner Morro Castle caught fire off the New Jersey coastline. The blaze claimed 134 lives of crewmembers and passengers entrapped aboard a flaming inferno.

Fortunately, New Jerseyans have since taken the initiative by playing a lead role model of America’s top firefighting forces. To join their prestigious ranks that go to bat daily on behalf of all fellow Garden State residents, read on for brief directions.

Preliminary Low Hurdles to Negotiate High-Paying New Jersey Firefighter Careers

• Be at least 18 years old
• Hold a valid New Jersey Driver’s License
• Be a high school graduate or GED holder
• Complete an oral interview with hiring authority (3 to 5 local fire chiefs)
• Pass a written general knowledge exam in basic reading and math skills
• Pass a medical exam and physical fitness testing (larger departments use CPAT)
• Pass a complete drug screen
• Pass a criminal history check
• Pass a statewide civil service exam

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The last item is mandatory for all prospective Garden State firefighters and requires a $35 registration fee for non-military vets or $15 for ex-service members. Visit New Jersey Civil Service Commission’s official website to browse regularly updated FAQs about the statewide Entry-Level Firefighters’ Exam at http://www.state.nj.us/csc/authorities/faq/safety/firefighters.html.

Inside Tips to Get a Good New Jersey Firefighting Gig

It is vital to note that New Jersey fire departments give strongest preference that favors “Volunteers” and “Veterans.” Thus, honorably discharged military vets and volunteer firefighters with length of tenure at least two years get first picks of prime full-time positions. As local departmental policies vary and often include additional criteria, verify specifics at http://www.firedepartments.net/NewJersey/NJ.html.

Once all initial requirements outlined above are fully satisfied, your name will be entered on a list of eligible candidates for hire by local fire departments. After a typical wait of 6 to 12 months, you may be contacted by the hiring authority and offered probationary employment. During that orientation period, you must obtain Firefighter II certification and in many cases, an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) or Paramedic Certificate as well.

What Does New Jersey Firefighter I & II Certification Training Consist Of?

Chief topics of universal coverage in state-approved FF I & II certification courses are:

• Forced Building Entry
• Local Fire Codes & Ordinances
• Fire Truck Inspections & Operations
• Hazardous Waste Handling & Disposal
• Incident Management System
• Blood-borne Pathogens Training

New Jersey Firefighter EMT/Paramedic Certification

Despite the apparent lack of any applicable statewide regulatory mandate for either EMT or Paramedic certification, some larger New Jersey fire departments do require such credentials. However, many do not require these certifications unless the candidate plans to serve as a medic.

Advanced Education Perfunctory to Enhanced Professional Firefighter Career

Very few local fire departments in New Jersey require applicants to have any minimum level of formal education. However, it is a necessary in order to earn FF-II certification before expiration of your initial post-hire probation period. In addition, a few larger departments like Newark do require eligible candidates for hire to have at least FF-I training before even granting eligible candidates an in-person interview.

What Is The Average Salary of a Firefighter in New Jersey?

Per stats published in August 2013, annual gross average pay for all New Jersey firefighters was $48, 5000, with a mean figure reported as $70,160 per year. Garden State firefighters with five or more years’ experience grossed average earnings that exceeded $105,000 per annum. Furthermore, some New Jersey fire battalion chiefs rake in at least $140,000 during each round of an average year. Those in pursuit of most fertile New Jersey territories in terms of highest firefighter pay are well advised to stay within Atlantic City, Camden and Newark as most promising targeted areas for concentrated efforts.

Finally, as nearly 70% of New Jersey firefighters are volunteers, listing as many relevant credentials as possible on your resume is vital to have a fighting chance at paid career positions. Several accredited academies and junior colleges across the state offer associate’s degrees in Fire Sciences. Since the hiring process can take at least two years in any event, why not put waiting time to highest and best use by volunteering and voting “Yes” in favor of the best of both worlds right now. Also search below widget to start exploring great fire education programs in the Garden State – risk free right now!

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