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Fire Inspectors and Investigators

Inspect buildings to detect fire hazards and enforce local ordinances and state laws, or investigate and gather facts to determine cause of fires and explosions.

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    Work Activities

    Work Activities

    • Attend training classes to maintain current knowledge of fire prevention, safety, and firefighting procedures.
    • Test sites and materials to establish facts, such as burn patterns and flash points of materials, using test equipment.
    • Dust evidence or portions of fire scenes for latent fingerprints.
    • Issue permits for public assemblies.
    • Supervise staff, training them, planning their work, and evaluating their performance.
    • Identify corrective actions necessary to bring properties into compliance with applicable fire codes, laws, regulations, and standards, and explain these measures to property owners or their representatives.
    • Develop or review fire exit plans.
    • Inspect and test fire protection or fire detection systems to verify that such systems are installed in accordance with appropriate laws, codes, ordinances, regulations, and standards.
    • Analyze evidence and other information to determine probable cause of fire or explosion.
    • Package collected pieces of evidence in securely closed containers, such as bags, crates, or boxes, to protect them.
    • Examine fire sites and collect evidence such as glass, metal fragments, charred wood, and accelerant residue for use in determining the cause of a fire.
    • Instruct children about the dangers of fire.
    • Inspect properties that store, handle, and use hazardous materials to ensure compliance with laws, codes, and regulations, and issue hazardous materials permits to facilities found in compliance.
    • Write detailed reports of fire inspections performed, fire code violations observed, and corrective recommendations offered.
    • Identify corrective actions necessary to bring properties into compliance with applicable fire codes, laws, regulations, and standards, and explain these measures to property owners or their representatives.
    • Coordinate efforts with other organizations, such as law enforcement agencies.
    • Conduct inspections and acceptance testing of newly installed fire protection systems.
    • Prepare and maintain reports of investigation results, and records of convicted arsonists and arson suspects.
    • Teach public education programs on fire safety and prevention.
    • Recommend changes to fire prevention, inspection, and fire code endorsement procedures.
    • Develop and coordinate fire prevention programs, such as false alarm billing, fire inspection reporting, and hazardous materials management.
    • Develop and coordinate fire prevention programs, such as false alarm billing, fire inspection reporting, and hazardous materials management.
    • Teach fire investigation techniques to other firefighter personnel.
    • Photograph damage and evidence related to causes of fires or explosions to document investigation findings.
    • Inspect buildings to locate hazardous conditions and fire code violations, such as accumulations of combustible material, electrical wiring problems, and inadequate or non-functional fire exits.
    • Conduct fire code compliance follow-ups to ensure that corrective actions have been taken in cases where violations were found.
    • Inspect properties that store, handle, and use hazardous materials to ensure compliance with laws, codes, and regulations, and issue hazardous materials permits to facilities found in compliance.
    • Teach fire investigation techniques to other firefighter personnel.
    • Supervise staff, training them, planning their work, and evaluating their performance.
    • Prepare and maintain reports of investigation results, and records of convicted arsonists and arson suspects.
    • Testify in court cases involving fires, suspected arson, and false alarms.
    • Review blueprints and plans for new or remodeled buildings to ensure the structures meet fire safety codes.
    • Conduct fire exit drills to monitor and evaluate evacuation procedures.
    • Subpoena and interview witnesses, property owners, and building occupants to obtain information and sworn testimony.
    • Conduct internal investigation to determine negligence and violation of laws and regulations by fire department employees.
    • Arrange for the replacement of defective fire fighting equipment and for repair of fire alarm and sprinkler systems, making minor repairs such as servicing fire extinguishers when feasible.
    • Supervise staff, training them, planning their work, and evaluating their performance.

    Skills

    • Operations Monitoring

      Watching gauges, dials, or display screens to make sure a machine is working.

    • Judgment and Decision Making

      Thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one.

    • Repairing

      Repairing machines or systems using the right tools.

    • Service Orientation

      Looking for ways to help people.

    • Complex Problem Solving

      Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.

    • Learning Strategies

      Using the best training or teaching strategies for learning new things.

    • Reading Comprehension

      Reading work-related information.

    • Science

      Using scientific rules and strategies to solve problems.

    • Speaking

      Talking to others.

    • Mathematics

      Using math to solve problems.

    • Active Learning

      Figuring out how to use new ideas or things.

    • Installation

      Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or computer programs.

    • Programming

      Writing computer programs.

    • Operation and Control

      Using equipment or systems.

    • Systems Analysis

      Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it.

    • Equipment Maintenance

      Planning and doing the basic maintenance on equipment.

    • Monitoring

      Keeping track of how well people and/or groups are doing in order to make improvements.

    • Social Perceptiveness

      Understanding people's reactions.

    • Instructing

      Teaching people how to do something.

    • Writing

      Writing things for co-workers or customers.

    • Persuasion

      Talking people into changing their minds or their behavior.

    • Coordination

      Changing what is done based on other people's actions.

    • Negotiation

      Bringing people together to solve differences.

    • Management of Financial Resources

      Making spending decisions and keeping track of what is spent.

    • Management of Material Resources

      Managing equipment and materials.

    • Management of Personnel Resources

      Selecting and managing the best workers for a job.

    • Operations Analysis

      Figuring out what a product or service needs to be able to do.

    • Technology Design

      Making equipment and technology useful for customers.

    • Quality Control Analysis

      Testing how well a product or service works.

    • Troubleshooting

      Figuring out what is causing equipment, machines, wiring, or computer programs to not work.

    • Time Management

      Managing your time and the time of other people.

    • Systems Evaluation

      Measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it.

    • Equipment Selection

      Deciding what kind of tools and equipment are needed to do a job.

    • Active Listening

      Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.

    • Critical Thinking

      Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.

    WorkKeys®

    Applied Math
    4
    Workplace Documents
    5
    Graphic Literacy
    4

    Abilities

    • Glare Sensitivity

      Seeing something even if there is a glare or very bright light.

    • Night Vision

      Seeing at night or under low light.

    • Sound Localization

      Noticing the direction that a sound came from.

    • Far Vision

      Seeing details that are far away.

    • Hearing Sensitivity

      Telling the difference between sounds.

    • Gross Body Coordination

      Moving your arms, legs, and mid-section together while your whole body is moving.

    • Originality

      Creating new and original ideas.

    • Category Flexibility

      Grouping things in different ways.

    • Memorization

      Remembering words, numbers, pictures, or steps.

    • Speed of Closure

      Quickly knowing what you are looking at.

    • Visualization

      Imagining how something will look after it is moved around or changed.

    • Deductive Reasoning

      Using rules to solve problems.

    • Number Facility

      Adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing.

    • Spatial Orientation

      Knowing where things are around you.

    • Selective Attention

      Paying attention to something without being distracted.

    • Finger Dexterity

      Putting together small parts with your fingers.

    • Multilimb Coordination

      Using your arms and/or legs together while sitting, standing, or lying down.

    • Speed of Limb Movement

      Quickly moving your arms and legs.

    • Stamina

      Exercising for a long time without getting out of breath.

    • Mathematical Reasoning

      Choosing the right type of math to solve a problem.

    • Auditory Attention

      Paying attention to one sound while there are other distracting sounds.

    • Gross Body Equilibrium

      Keeping your balance or staying upright.

    • Depth Perception

      Deciding which thing is closer or farther away from you, or deciding how far away it is from you.

    • Speech Clarity

      Speaking clearly.

    • Oral Comprehension

      Listening and understanding what people say.

    • Oral Expression

      Communicating by speaking.

    • Written Expression

      Communicating by writing.

    • Peripheral Vision

      Seeing something to your side when your are looking ahead.

    • Speech Recognition

      Recognizing spoken words.

    • Inductive Reasoning

      Making general rules or coming up with answers from lots of detailed information.

    • Reaction Time

      Quickly moving your hand, finger, or foot based on a sound, light, picture or other command.

    • Wrist-Finger Speed

      Making fast, simple, repeated movements of your fingers, hands, and wrists.

    • Static Strength

      Lifting, pushing, pulling, or carrying.

    • Explosive Strength

      Jumping, sprinting, or throwing something.

    • Trunk Strength

      Using your lower back and stomach.

    • Perceptual Speed

      Quickly comparing groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.

    • Fluency of Ideas

      Coming up with lots of ideas.

    • Arm-Hand Steadiness

      Keeping your arm or hand steady.

    • Manual Dexterity

      Holding or moving items with your hands.

    • Control Precision

      Quickly changing the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.

    • Response Orientation

      Quickly deciding if you should move your hand, foot, or other body part.

    • Rate Control

      Changing when and how fast you move based on how something else is moving.

    • Dynamic Strength

      Exercising for a long time without your muscles getting tired.

    • Extent Flexibility

      Bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching with your body, arms, and/or legs.

    • Dynamic Flexibility

      Quickly and repeatedly bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching out with your body, arms, and/or legs.

    • Written Comprehension

      Reading and understanding what is written.

    • Near Vision

      Seeing details up close.

    • Visual Color Discrimination

      Noticing the difference between colors, including shades and brightness.

    • Flexibility of Closure

      Seeing hidden patterns.

    • Problem Sensitivity

      Noticing when problems happen.

    • Information Ordering

      Ordering or arranging things.

    • Time Sharing

      Doing two or more things at the same time.

    Knowledge

    • Communications and Media

      Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.

    • Sales and Marketing

      Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.

    • Medicine and Dentistry

      Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.

    • Geography

      Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.

    • Law and Government

      Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.

    • Administrative

      Knowledge of administrative and office procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and workplace terminology.

    • Design

      Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

    • Mechanical

      Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

    • Sociology and Anthropology

      Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures, and their history and origins.

    • Foreign Language

      Knowledge of the structure and content of a foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.

    • Customer and Personal Service

      Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

    • Computers and Electronics

      Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

    • Engineering and Technology

      Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.

    • Food Production

      Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.

    • English Language

      Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

    • History and Archeology

      Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.

    • Production and Processing

      Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

    • Biology

      Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.

    • Fine Arts

      Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

    • Public Safety and Security

      Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

    • Mathematics

      Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

    • Chemistry

      Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.

    • Philosophy and Theology

      Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.

    • Administration and Management

      Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

    • Transportation

      Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.

    • Psychology

      Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

    • Economics and Accounting

      Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking, and the analysis and reporting of financial data.

    • Education and Training

      Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

    • Telecommunications

      Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.

    • Personnel and Human Resources

      Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.

    • Building and Construction

      Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.

    • Physics

      Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub-atomic structures and processes.

    • Therapy and Counseling

      Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.

    Career Video

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    Pay

    • Ohio Annual Salary 97300/yr
    • Typical Salary
    • Ohio Hourly Wage 46.78/hr
    • Typical Hourly Wage

    Ohio Employment Trends

    • Currently Employed 340
    • Yearly Projected Openings 30

    Typical Education

    Personality

    Realistic: People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.They do well at jobs that need:
    • Integrity
    • Cooperation
    • Attention to Detail
    • Dependability
    • Initiative
    • Concern for Others

    Tools

    • Acoustic ear muffs or defenders
    • Adjustable wrenches
    • Air velocity and temperature monitors
    • Anemometers
    • Automobiles or cars
    • Ball peen hammer
    • Barometers
    • Battery testers
    • Bolt cutters
    • Box end wrenches
    • Bullet proof vests
    • Camera flashes or lighting
    • Camera lens
    • Camera tripods
    • Circuit tester
    • Claw hammer
    • Cold chisels
    • Digital camcorders or video cameras
    • Digital cameras
    • Digital voice recorders
    • Direction finding compasses
    • Dosing droppers
    • Electrical frequency meters
    • Emergency light unit
    • End cut pliers
    • Fingerprint equipment
    • Fire alarm systems
    • Fire extinguishers
    • Fire hoses or nozzles
    • Fire suppression hand tools
    • Fire suppression system
    • Flashlight
    • Flood light
    • Flowmeters
    • Forestry saws
    • Fuse pullers
    • GFI circuit testers
    • Gas chromatographs
    • Gas detectors
    • Gas generators
    • Hacksaw
    • Handcuffs
    • Handguns
    • Handheld thermometer
    • Hatchets
    • Hoes
    • Hydrocarbons analyzers or detectors
    • Laboratory forceps
    • Ladders
    • Laser fax machine
    • Levels
    • Linemans pliers
    • Locking pliers
    • Lux or light meter
    • Magnetic tools
    • Magnifying glass
    • Masks or accessories
    • Measuring wheels for distance
    • Mobile medical services first aid kits
    • Mobile phones
    • Multimeters
    • Notebook computers
    • Pad or keyhole saw
    • Personal computers
    • Pipe or tube cutter
    • Pipe wrenches
    • Plumb bobs
    • Pocket calculator
    • Pocket knives
    • Power drills
    • Protective coats
    • Protective hood
    • Protective pants
    • Pry bars
    • Psychrometers
    • Putty knives
    • Rakes
    • Rangefinders
    • Razor knives
    • Respiration air supplying self contained breathing apparatus or accessories
    • Respirators
    • Rulers
    • Safety glasses
    • Safety helmets
    • Screwdrivers
    • Shears
    • Shovels
    • Single gas monitors
    • Sledge hammer
    • Slip or groove joint pliers
    • Smoke detectors
    • Sound measuring apparatus or decibel meter
    • Specialty wrenches
    • Spectrophotometers
    • Still cameras
    • Sump pumps
    • Tablet computers
    • Tape measures
    • Tinners snips
    • Trowels
    • Tweezers
    • Two way radios
    • Ultraviolet UV lamps
    • Utility knives
    • Voltage or current meters
    • Water storage tanks
    • Wire cutters
    • Wire gauge
    • Wire-stripping pliers
    • Wood chisels
    • X ray radiography examination equipment

    Technology

    • Analytical or scientific software
    • Data base user interface and query software
    • Electronic mail software
    • Human resources software
    • Internet browser software
    • Office suite software
    • Presentation software
    • Spreadsheet software
    • Word processing software

    Tags

    • Apprenticeships are available for this occupation. These programs can help you get hands-on experience and build your skills.

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