Tumwater City Hall and all City facilities will be closed to the public until further notice. Visit our COVID-19 webpage for more information.

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Police, fire, and emergency medical response services are available as usual. Emergency? Call 9-1-1.

About the Firefighter Position

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Consider a Career in Fire & EMS Services

Firefighters provide emergency assistance and protective services to people in our community.

They are trained and equipped to protect life and property threatened by disaster, fire, explosion, hazardous materials, illness, accidents and other hazards. Firefighters perform rescue and emergency medical services in accordance with Thurston County Medic One protocols. Work may involve environments that are dangerous to life and health. Strenuous physical exertion under stressful conditions may be required during training and emergency scene operations. The work environment includes, but is not limited to, confined spaces, temperature extremes, inclement weather, extreme heights, exposure to diseases, and violent acts.

The career firefighter also conducts or participates in non-emergency services, including training, pre-incident planning, fire/injury prevention, public education, building inspections, public relations, facility and equipment maintenance, apparatus and equipment checks, report writing, and other activities.  


Direct supervision is from a superior firefighter, Fire Lieutenant, or Fire Captain. Performance evaluations are conducted by a Company Officer.

Essential Functions:

Typical firefighter tasks and or assignments include but are not limited to:

  1. Compliant with Agency policies, guidelines, rules, and regulations.
  2. Responds to emergencies. 
  3. Public education, outreach, and training.
  4. Participates in assigned training.
  5. Responds to customer requests.
  6. Operating agency equipment and apparatus. 
  7. Physical training/conditioning.
  8. Obtaining and retaining Agency-required professional certifications.
  9. Timely and accurate documentation of activities.
  10. Operating a variety of telecommunication tools and computer programs.
  11. Mentoring other firefighters.
  12. Opportunity to work out of class after sufficient training and experience is completed.
  13. Other duties as assigned. 


Firefighters routinely come in contact with the general public, law enforcement personnel, medical professionals, and fire service personnel from other jurisdictions. Contacts with the public are generally in emergency and stressful situations, which require the employee to present and maintain a professional, service-oriented public image. Firefighters must be able to use tact, discretion, and may exercise independent judgment in emergency or dangerous situations.


Firefighters are accountable for maintaining public safety through fire suppression and prevention, basic life support emergency medical response, and for compliance with departmental or other policies, procedures, regulations and/or codes.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  1. Ability to work in a closely managed, paramilitary management system.
  2. Ability to follow verbal and written instructions and comply with safety regulations.
  3. Ability to work under hazardous conditions using proper techniques and wearing proper equipment.
  4. Ability to learn principles and techniques of modern fire suppression, prevention and lifesaving procedures and techniques.
  5. Ability to maintain composure and self-control under adverse conditions.
  6. Ability to cope with situations firmly, courteously, tactfully, and with respect for the rights of the others.
  7. Ability to interact and communicate effectively with people of different genders, races, ethnicities, cultures, abilities, and experiences. Multilingual skills are desirable.
  8. Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with other City employees and external partners.
  9. Ability to meet adopted performance standards.
  10. Ability to hold self in readiness at all times to answer calls, accept authority, and obey orders from superiors.
  11. Ability to attend school, conferences, and training sessions, keeping current in tactics and other information related to this position.
  12. Ability to work/operate cooperatively in small groups and team environments to accomplish mission, task, and/or assignments.
  13. Must be able to drive fire apparatus, medic units, and Agency vehicles.
  14. Ability to understands and adheres to the Agency’s policies, procedures and operating guidelines.

Minimum Qualifications:

  1. Must have (at the time of hire) and maintain throughout employment a valid Washington State Driver’s License.
  2. Maintain good driving record as required by Agency policy.
  3. Minimum of high school diploma or GED equivalency.
  4. Prior to appointment, successfully pass Candidate Physical Ability Test (C.P.A.T.)

Training Requirements:

  1. Successfully complete an Agency-recognized firefighter recruit academy.
  2. Obtain Washington Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification as required by Thurston County Medic One within one (1) year of appointment and maintain throughout the period of employment. 
  3. Obtain IFSAC Firefighter I within the first year of employment.
  4. Obtain IFSAC Firefighter II with the first two (2) years of employment.
  5. Complete the Washington State Fire Fighters Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (JATC) program for Firefighter within first three (3) years.

Physical Requirements: 

  1. Must be a minimum of 21 years of age at time of appointment.
  2. Must be able to read, utilize a computer (screen, keyboard, etc.), write, and understand various reports, letters, documents, emails, training materials, etc.
  3. Frequent movement is necessary in a fire station setting, in meetings and/or training, at conferences, ext., for long periods.
  4. Occasionally ascends/descends stairs and/or ladders; occasionally positions self to reach high/low work spaces; occasionally kneels, stoops, crouches, or crawls.
  5. Must successfully pass Agency’s requirements for fitness for duty test and SCBA/HEPA mask fit test.
  6. Lifting and or moving up to 50 pounds and occasionally lifting or moving up to 150 pounds.
  7. Specific vision abilities required by the job include close vision, depth perception and the ability to adjust focus. Corrected vision is permitted.
  8. Frequently operates a computer and other office production machinery such as a calculator, copy machine, and computer printer.
  9. Frequently works in an indoor or outdoor setting; occasionally required to work for prolonged periods without rest during disasters or in inclement weather.
  10. Must successfully pass the Agency’s pre-hire background, medical physical, drug screen, and suitability testing.

Working Conditions:

  1. Firefighters work in a team environment.
  2. Shifts are generally 24 hours.
  3. Training outside the normal shift schedule will be required. 
  4. Subject to callback situations.
  5. Work in various indoor settings including living quarters, office areas, classrooms, automotive, mechanical, and other storage areas.
  6. Majority of work is performed preparing or responding to emergency situations, indoors or outdoors, including exposure to hazards associated with firefighting, emergency medical response, rescue operations, natural and man-made disasters.
  7. Firefighters are exposed to physically and mentally stressful situations, including trauma, illness, contagious diseases, extreme temperatures, and contaminated environments.

The City of Tumwater is an Equal Opportunity Employer, committed to a diverse workforce. Women, minorities, and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.