5 Surprising Traits of A Good Firefighter
Firefighters are known for a few things: their integrity, charitable nature, and their willingness to die for strangers. Their bravery is just one trait among many that sets them apart from the average person, while making them particularly good at their job. Of course, these traits are no secret to the average person. People have a pretty good idea of the amount of courage it takes to run into a flaming building, mostly because very few people have any kind of courage that even closely resembles that of a fireman or firewoman. We’ve all seen that big red car speeding own the street, sirens blaring, as they race off to some unknown tragedy to rescue someone once more, and we’ve all realized that we could never do the job they’re doing.
Between rushing into burning buildings, suffocating under the weight of heavy equipment, and being choked by smoke, it’s no surprise that a firefighter job is not for everyone. But what other traits are required of a firefighter?
They Know How To Cook
I’ve mentioned it before and I’ll mention it again, firefighters love to cook. They also like to eat—usually in that order. Because being a firefighter requires you to spend days at a time in the firehouse, it’s important that everyone pitch in with the cooking. Learning new recipes that will feed many people will go over great in the midst of your fellow firefighters. Starting early, and having a functional understanding of the kitchen will give you an edge up with your predecessors. Firefighters that have been around for a while don’t necessarily have the time or the energy to teach those newbies where to start. If you’re thinking of going for a firefighter job then consider taking a basic cooking course to get yourself comfortable in the kitchen.
They Don’t Mind Cleaning
Like cooking, cleaning is a big part of a firehouse. Everyone is expected in one way to pitch in with the cleaning and general upkeep of the house. When firefighters forego cleaning duties, it not only creates a mess, but it also creates a safety hazard when things start moving. Good firefighters don’t mind cleaning and carrying some of the responsibility of a houseguest to keep things clean and tidy. They don’t need to be asked repeatedly to pick up after themselves, and take initiative to clean where there’s a mess. If you’re the kind of person who has an aversion to cleaning then it’s high time to get over it and start picking up your own personal space to get in the habit
They Don’t Cringe Easily
Firefighters are often called to the scene of many accidents and are on the scene before police or ambulances. This means that there’s a large likelihood that accidents, bloody or otherwise, might not have been attended to before their arrival. Likewise, burn victims have very serious injuries that can be both bloody and gory to behold. A good firefighter is able to stomach the serious injuries and attend to people without taking pause.
They Can Run On Minimal Sleep
Firefighters, as mentioned above, are typically on the job for twenty-four hours or more at a time, and even when they’re off they are usually on call. Firefighters must be prepared to run on minimal sleep, while still acting at full speed. They cannot afford to get drowsy easily, lest they run the risk of causing injury or further harm to victims of accidents. Before applying to a firefighter job, be quite certain that you’re someone who can run, and even thrive, off of minimal hours of sleep.
They Have A Flexible Schedule
I once applied for a job around the holidays where the interviewer asked me what my availability was. I was confused, wasn’t the point of applying for a job that you had open availability, and if not then in the near future at the very least? The interviewer explained that they had people already requesting dates off, which was a red flag for them. Not just something for regular jobs, a flexible schedule is required of a firefighter, perhaps even more so. Firefighters must be willing to switch shifts, come in at the last minute, and work on days they might not like to (such as holidays and weekends). Fires can occur over any season and in any condition, making it essential to have an understanding of a flexible schedule an absolute requirement for firefighter jobs.
Firefighters are brave, but they also are selfless with their time, domestic habits, and everything else. While people might think they have the obvious traits, many others are surprised to learn that they don’t fit the mold of a firefighter as easily as they may have assumed.