Fire Captain

Command a station's crew of Firefighters.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$41,000 – $111,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Fire Captains do?

A Fire Captain is in charge of a crew of Firefighters in one fire station. As a Fire Captain, you provide training, direction, supervision, and mentoring to help the Firefighters stay safe while on the job.

You possess leadership skills that play an extremely important role at the scene of a fire. You examine the fire and determine the best way to put it out. As the Fire Captain, you’re in charge until the Fire Battalion Chief arrives on the scene, then you’ll likely work side by side with the Firefighters, applying water and assisting the wounded. When the fire is out, you fill out reports detailing how it started and what was done to put it out.

During quiet times, you train your crew on firefighting techniques. You may be working with a group of volunteers who will need your leadership and guidance to truly become useful members of the team, so your training will be crucial.

You also inspect the fire trucks and hoses, making sure everything is in proper working order. You direct the crew to wash and maintain the equipment, then you inspect their work. Additionally, you request new equipment if needed.

Many people regard you as the face of the fire department. You talk to frightened homeowners to try to calm them down as they watch their homes burn. You also teach schoolchildren about fire safety at their schools. Additionally, you may run fire drills for large offices and corporations.

A friendly, open demeanor is a must for this position. Putting out fires is only part of the job. Winning the public over, so you have fewer fires to fight, is the long-term goal.


Should I be a Fire Captain?

You should have a certificate degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Leader: You're good at taking charge, giving directions, and inspiring other people.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Calm Under Pressure: You keep your cool when dealing with highly stressful situations.

  • Also known as: Fire Captain, Marine, Fire Hand Crew Boss, Fire Officer, Fire Suppression Captain, Wildland Fire Coordinator

    How to become a Fire Captain

    We recommend at least a Certificate. Check out these schools offering Fire Captain-related education!
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