Day in the Life of a Firefighter
Day in the Life of a Firefighter
The idea of A Day in the Life of a Firefighter is to give you some context and perspective on the inner workings and some of the more mundane tasks you may face as a professional firefighter.
I want to share this with you so you can make a more informed decision if this is a career for you
If you want to be a firefighter in Australia then have a watch of this interview with Aaron (firefighter) and Brent (from Fire Recruitment Australia). Aaron takes us through his daily routines and tasks from the unexpected emergencies to the day-to-day running of the station.
Brent Clayton: Hi there. It’s Brent Clayton here from firerecruitmentaustralia.com, and today, the subject I’m going to cover is a day in the life of a firefighter. And I’m lucky enough to have Aaron Ficheroux over here that’s going to talk through the structure of his day, the incidents that he might attend, or he has attended throughout his career, and share a challenging incident that he’s been to. So thanks very much for your time today, Fich.
Aaron Ficheroux: Oh, no dramas, Brent. Thanks for having us.
Brent Clayton: Awesome, mate. So can you just run us through sort of the structure of your day as a firefighter?
Aaron Ficheroux: Yep. So, typically, the day will start off, our first priority’s checking the trucks first. So we’ll go and have a sort of from one end to the other with the trucks, make sure all our gears ready to go operational-wise, make sure the pumps right to go on the truck. That’s our big toolbox on wheels, basically, so we want that ready to go for whatever jobs we might get. So that’s the first part of the day. That’s a pretty important part of the day, making sure our gear’s ready to go. After that, we usually, different days during the week, we’re assigned with some different duties. Just say one day might be committed to one truck. We’ll do an inventory on the whole truck, running every bit of gear, making sure that everything that’s meant to be on the truck is ticked off and that it is there. Also, we also have time for personal training or development. So we have guys at different ranks, so different stages of training, you can say. So we’ll develop and put in a bit of time for those guys to be able to get that development into that.
We’ve got new guys coming in too, so that’s a bit of a challenge in that we got to do some consolidation training with them.
Brent Clayton: Cool.
Aaron Ficheroux: And get them up to speed. So that’s sort of a Snapchat or a snap …
Brent Clayton: Cool. Snapchat?
Aaron Ficheroux: Snapchat?
Brent Clayton: Cool, mate. So I suppose just to even clarify it a bit further, what sort of some of the stuff you’ve been working on the last couple of shifts as far as training and community sort of stuff?
Aaron Ficheroux: Yeah. So one thing I guess we’re looking at doing is we have preplans. We have [inaudible 00:02:03] premises. So what we’ve just started doing with that is making sure they’re up to date, but also is accurate in regards to the information they contain. So we might be doing a little bit of reconnaissance, getting photos, being sure contact details, water points, things like that. Very important for us. Myself, next year I’m looking to go to another rank, so I’ve got some core modules that I’ve started to work on as well. And that includes sort of, I guess more at your rank, Brent, with some command and control stuff. So I may … You’ve been taking me through, yeah, important drills and introducing me to that world of things too. And that’s been good.
Brent Clayton: Yeah. So there’s a large range of stuff you’re exposed. Like Aaron has touched on that the preplan sort of things … I know he’s been helping one of the new guys with his driving, stuff like that. And there’s also things like administration duties and cleaning and stuff that you do as well.
Aaron Ficheroux: Yeah. There is, eh. They might seem mundane, but that’s part of station life, of getting things done throughout the day. That’s probably the less glorified part, but it does round you out as a firefighter to do those things.
Brent Clayton: Yes. And that’s the idea of this video today is just to give you a more realistic idea of what a firefighter gets up to day today apart from going to fires, et cetera. And another thing that sort of happens at the very start of the day is we have a master, or a meeting, where we all agree on the objectives and stuff for the day, and everyone gets assigned their tasks for the day, and stuff like that. So that’s something that goes on at the start. And now, Aaron, so what are some of the jobs that we might attend, so as far as emergencies go?
Aaron Ficheroux: It’s, as you’re aware, emergencies come big, small sizes, everything. So we’ll go to a car accidents where there’s just a minor bing where we just washing away a bit of mess of the ground. Or something that is a bit more involved and people may be trapped and injured. We also go to medical emergencies now as well. That’s a big part of our job in regards to, obviously, helping saving peoples’ lives in that aspect. Fires. That’s why we’re firefighters. That can range from, again, just a small bin fire, they’re actually more common than you might think, to a house fire that’s fully going and is … It can be exciting, but quite dynamic at the same time. Come summer, we know what Australia’s famous for in regards to the bush fire threat.
Brent Clayton: Yeah, exactly.
Aaron Ficheroux: That keeps us busy. Yeah it’s pretty bad time as well.
Brent Clayton: Yeah. And even if you’re working for a service that doesn’t do the medical sort of things, you’ll be exposed to it in some way anyway through first aid and managing scenes and stuff like that. And another one is the hazmat, so the hazardous materials sort of stuff. Less common in frequency, but yeah, definitely something that goes on as far as jobs go, mate. So have you got a sort of a specific job that sort of stands out just in type, but brief, that’s sort of challenged you as a firefighter, mate?
Aaron Ficheroux: Yeah. Probably early on in my career. You touched on hazmat incidents there. We had one on the freeway. We had a bulk carrier, 20,000 litres of hydrochloric acid. That tanker sprung a leak. And being a new firefighter and it was all pretty dynamic, and, I guess challenging in that obviously mitigating that incident that was taking place. And the first setup, I guess, was that little bit of challenge of knowing what to do with and how to mitigate it. After that, it was straightforward. But I guess in regards to challenges in job, instead of pinpointing maybe one specific job, the biggest challenge I find as a firefighter is so much knowledge that you have to know in regards to the various incidents that we go to. You have to just get that training, the knowledge up here. I think that’s the biggest challenge
Brent Clayton: Because it’s never a straightforward sort of thing, is it, mate?
Aaron Ficheroux: Oh, never. Never.
Brent Clayton: That’s something that we can definitely agree on. So thanks very much, Aaron, for-
Aaron Ficheroux: Not a problem.
Brent Clayton: … coming on and sharing that with us. And, hopefully, that’s given you a deeper insight into the general tasks and goings on of a firefighter day to day. Thanks for watching
Aaron Ficheroux: Thank you.
Brent Clayton: I’m Brent Clayton. This is Aaron Ficheroux. This is firerecruitmentaustralia.com. Make sure you give us a thumbs up below the video. Subscribe if you don’t want to miss out on any of this info. And I’ll catch you next time.
Aaron Ficheroux: Thanks, guys.
Brent Clayton: Thanks.