risk level
Based on 350 votes
by 2031
or $24.84 hourly
as of 2022

Automation risk

0.0% (Minimal Risk)

Minimal Risk (0-20%): Occupations in this category have a low probability of being automated, as they typically demand complex problem-solving, creativity, strong interpersonal skills, and a high degree of manual dexterity. These jobs often involve intricate hand movements and precise coordination, making it difficult for machines to replicate the required tasks.

More information on what this score is, and how it is calculated is available here.

Some very important qualities of the job are difficult to automate:

  • Assisting and Caring for Others

Some quite important qualities of the job are difficult to automate:

  • Cramped Work Space, Awkward Positions

  • Manual Dexterity

  • Social Perceptiveness

  • Finger Dexterity

User poll

25% chance of full automation within the next two decades

Our visitors have voted that there is a small chance this occupation will be replaced. This assessment is further supported by the calculated automation risk level, which estimates 0.0% chance of automation.

What do you think the risk of automation is?

What is the likelihood that this occupation will be replaced by robots or AI in the next 20 years?


Moderate growth relative to other professions

The number of 'Firefighters' job openings is expected to rise 4.3% by 2031

Total employment, and estimated job openings

* Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for the period between 2021 and 2031.
Updated projections are due Sep 2023.


Moderately paid relative to other professions

In 2022, the median annual wage for 'Firefighters' was $51,680, or $24.84 per hour

'Firefighters' were paid 11.6% higher than the national median wage, which stood at $46,310

Wages over time

* Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics


Significantly greater range of job opportunities compared to other professions

As of 2022 there were 321,450 people employed as Firefighters within the United States.

This represents around 0.22% of the employed workforce across the country.

Put another way, around 1 in 460 people are employed as Firefighters.

Job description

Control and extinguish fires or respond to emergency situations where life, property, or the environment is at risk. Duties may include fire prevention, emergency medical service, hazardous material response, search and rescue, and disaster assistance.

SOC Code: 33-2011.00


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Leave a comment

V (No chance) says
In the next 20 years, there is no chance of technology advancing enough to completely replace firefighters maybe supplement like some departments are using UAVs now but in the next 20 years expect a robot to perform the complex tasks required by firefighting in changing environments that are structurally degraded and in which visibility will be significantly degraded isn't realistic in any way. In 50-100 years... maybe but predicting that far ahead is essentially useless. Who knows what crazy technology we'll have by then.
Oct 13, 2021 at 12:40 AM
Alvin (Could go either way) says
As someone who works in the field of machine learning, I can tell you that firefighters absolutely can be replaced. Now whether or not the general population will be ok with their hero’s going away, that’s another question itself. But if people can come off their pedestal and realize the lives automating this progression would save, then yes, it’ll be automated.
Oct 11, 2021 at 07:11 AM
Rh (Small chance) says
Replace firefighters altogether? Most likely not. However, we will definitely see technology and robots as more of an assistant to firefighters. At most, I think the robot would be good for the really hazardous tasks that would require you to be very close to said fire almost to the point of being burned. Everything else is best done by a human.
Sep 30, 2021 at 04:20 AM
Josef (Likely) says
Couldn't we make machines to hose down fires automatically? It doesn't seem that unlikely
Apr 09, 2021 at 10:50 AM
Oscar says
a firefighter not only fight the fire ... try to learn a robot traffic rescue. More robots helping the firefighters? ... yes, but no way to replace.
Mar 08, 2021 at 11:21 AM
Drake (No chance) says
It's 2020 and if we haven't been automated yet what makes you think we ever will?
Dec 03, 2020 at 11:05 PM
Kyle (Highly likely) says
Improvements in automatic sprinklers and fire suppression systems will replace the need for the fire fighting aspect of the job.
Mar 26, 2020 at 07:50 PM
yeah says
yeah so lets get rid of firefighters altogether, nothing can go wrong can it?
Oct 30, 2020 at 12:14 AM
Firefighter manager says
Wake up and smell the coffee technology is already impacting on the job ever heard of Boston Robotics
Mar 09, 2020 at 06:44 PM
Jack says
I image humans being fire fighters forever, because the robots may be on fire...
Mar 08, 2020 at 10:26 AM
Kevin (Highly likely) says
I think that AI should take over this job, because it is dangerous.
Jan 31, 2020 at 11:03 PM
Nguyen (No chance) says
There's not way a robot can preform the Heimlich manoeuvre on someone
Jan 28, 2020 at 04:22 AM
An Actual Firefighter says
If you think this will happen you’re f**king stupid.
Oct 18, 2019 at 12:32 AM
Em (No chance) says
You can't send a robot into a flaming building and expect it to adapt to its surroundings.
Oct 03, 2019 at 03:37 PM
Alvaro says
I can´t disagree more with this. Robots can be fireproof and humans are very affected by fire.
May 09, 2019 at 12:01 PM
Alvarado says
Problem I see with automation, still would be fun to attempt. Is that every building is different and the environment is changing, would also need to be able to feel and hear materials and their strengths. A lot of little details to automate, so extremely difficult. In terms of robots being physically more capable I'd say of course, but at same time likely heavier so would not work as well in a weaken building. But most likely I can see them being most useful being piloted remotely by firemen, and generally mostly when the environment is already rated as unpassable, so at the point where no firemen would enter the building anymore due to safety concerns. But in a potentially weakened building but safe enough to enter building, I could see humans having an advantage due to our lighter bodies.
Dec 18, 2019 at 02:37 AM

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