Fire Inspector Certification and Training

Fire inspectors can prepare for the job through certificate and associate's degree programs, as well as training programs that may be offered through organizations like government agencies. Explore what you'll learn during your fire inspector training, and review the voluntary certification process. Get info on the job outlook and typical salary for fire inspectors. Schools offering Fire & Emergency Services degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is Fire Inspector Certification and Training?

Fire inspector training is an educational program that provides you with the knowledge and skills needed to determine fire hazards and causes in various environments and to recommend corrective measures according to regulatory guidelines and protocols. As a fire inspector, you may examine buildings where businesses and other organizations assemble. You may also choose to serve as a forest fire inspector who looks out for fires in parks and forests. Fire inspector certification is a professional credential and also a state requirement.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that in many instances, fire inspectors and investigators have completed a postsecondary educational program designed for emergency medical technicians (EMTs) ( However, formal training may be advantageous for career opportunities and advancement.

Formal training is offered through various outlets, including community colleges, technical/vocational schools, trade organizations and government agencies. Training is available through fire inspector or fire safety inspector certificate programs and also through associate's degree programs in fire science or fire science technology. Training is provided via campus-based program formats.

Training DetailsFire inspector certification professional credential and state requirement
Formal training advantageous for advancement, offered by community colleges, technical/vocational schools, trade organizations, government agencies
Program OptionsCertificate and associate's degree programs available on campus
Common Courses Fire regulatory codes and standards, causes of fire, fire origins, fire protection systems, blueprints and building construction
CertificationVoluntary credentialing through professional certification with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
Job Outlook (2014-2024) 6% growth
Median Salary (2014)$54,020 for fire inspectors
$36,430 for forest fire inspectors

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Will My Training Consist of?

Basic training may include foundational courses, such as fire regulatory codes and standards, fire causes, fire origins, fire protection systems, blueprints and building construction. Through your associate's degree program, you may take more advanced coursework in fire dynamics, such as fire chemistry, combustion and behavior. You may also learn about evacuation planning, incident management systems and inspection checklists.

How Do I Get Certified?

Professional certification is a voluntary form of credentialing that is offered through trade organizations, such as the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). You may consider obtaining this type of certification for career growth. To earn NFPA certification, you'll need to complete the Fire Inspector Program, which includes the completion of case studies, an exam and a practicum ( To enroll in the program, you'll need at least a high school diploma or GED. State-regulated certification is administered by your state's governing authority, such as a licensing board, and is a mandated requirement to work as a fire inspector.

For state certification, you must submit an application and related fees to the administering agency/organization. Once your eligibility is confirmed, you will take an examination. Upon receiving a passing score, you will obtain your certification. Eligibility requirements, fees and other guidelines vary with each state and organization.

What Is My Job Outlook?

According to the BLS, the job growth rate of fire inspectors is projected to increase by 6% between 2014 and 2024. You could work for various employers, including local, state and federal government agencies, insurance companies and consulting firms. In 2014, the median salary of fire inspectors was $54,020; forest fire inspectors earned $36,430 during the same year.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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