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Career and Education Opportunities for Forest Firefighters in West Virginia

West Virginia has a population of 1,819,777, which has grown by 0.63% in the last 10 years. Nicknamed the "Mountain State," West Virginia's capital and largest city is Charleston.

There are currently 790 working forest firefighters in West Virginia; this should grow by 10% to about 870 working forest firefighters in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for forest firefighters, which sees this job pool growing by about 18.5% over the next eight years. In general, forest firefighters control and suppress fires in forests or vacant public land.

Forest firefighters earn approximately $14 hourly or $29,940 annually on average in West Virginia. Nationally they average about $21 per hour or $44,260 yearly. Forest firefighters earn less than people working in the category of Fire Control generally in West Virginia and less than people in the Fire Control category nationally. Forest firefighters work in a variety of jobs, including: wildland firefighter, forest ranger, and forest ranger technician.

In 2008, there were a total of 934,944 jobs in West Virginia. The average annual income was $31,634 in 2008, up from $30,121 in 2007. The unemployment rate in West Virginia was 7.9% in 2009, which has grown by 3.6% since the previous year. Roughly 14.8% of West Virginia residents have college degrees, which is lower than the national average.

The top industries in West Virginia include bituminous coal underground mining, plastics material manufacturing, and pipeline transportation. Notable tourist attractions include the South Charleston Museum, the West Virginia Humanities, and the Friends Of Blackwater Canyon.

CITIES WITH Forest Firefighter OPPORTUNITIES IN West Virginia


JOB DESCRIPTION: Forest Firefighter

Forest Firefighter video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, forest firefighters control and suppress fires in forests or vacant public land.

Every day, forest firefighters are expected to be able to lift, push and move large and heavy objects. They need to evaluate problems as they arise. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in West Virginia include:

  • Fire Code Inspector. Inspect buildings and equipment to detect fire hazards and enforce state and local regulations.
  • Fire Fighter. Control and extinguish municipal fires, protect life and property and conduct rescue efforts.
  • Fire Inspector. Conduct investigations to determine causes of fires and explosions.
  • Forest Fire Lookout. Enforce fire regulations and inspect for forest fire hazards. Report forest fires and weather conditions.

LOCATION INFORMATION: West Virginia

West Virginia
West Virginia photo by the U.S. Dept. of Transportation

West Virginia has a population of 1,819,777, which has grown by 0.63% over the past 10 years. Nicknamed the "Mountain State," West Virginia's capital and biggest city is Charleston. In 2008, there were a total of 934,944 jobs in West Virginia. The average annual income was $31,634 in 2008, up from $30,121 in 2007. The unemployment rate in West Virginia was 7.9% in 2009, which has grown by 3.6% since the previous year. Approximately 14.8% of West Virginia residents have college degrees, which is lower than the national average.

The top industries in West Virginia include bituminous coal underground mining, plastics material manufacturing, and pipeline transportation. Notable tourist attractions include the P A Denny, the Robert C Byrd Health Sciences C of W Vrgna Unvrsty, and the Craik.