Fire and Safety Courses in India: Eligibility, Fees, Career & Job
Thanks to the grim milestone that India has achieved, it is one of the countries claiming thousands of lives for the accidental fires throughout the country. What happens when there is a fire break-out? Majority of the people, panic.
Thus, losing out on time to save themselves and help others. To educate the masses, several fire and safety courses in India have come up. Let us see how these fire and safety courses help us as individuals and as a part of an organization to overcome deadly fires.
Why is this Fire and safety course a need of the hour?
Industrialization rate in India is ever increasing, thanks to the population explosion. This leads to a lot of increased fire threats nowadays as compared to what it was like, before. Let us talk about the fire that broke out at the Kamala Mills, Mumbai, at a pub around midnight. 14 people died and almost 55 were badly injured. Now the major concern is the reason why that fire broke out.
It was a terrace rooftop pub and restaurant and had a lot of illegal constructions. Even though repeated legal notices were sent, open spaces were occupied with dazzling and decorative cloth canopies. As these were present in the space that was to be kept open, according to fire and safety norms, the spread of the fire was fast and difficult to stop. People stuck there, couldn’t move out and run through the exit as it was not visible in smoke.
This was not a single incident where the safety norms were violated. Unfortunately, our country which possesses a decent literature rate does not have a population well aware of the fire and safety rules that come in handy to overcome gruesome fires. These fires can accidentally occur anywhere, maybe our home, or a building, or a forest, or an industry. It is therefore very important that we have trained professionals who have to get themselves certified by the specific fire and safety courses and be a savior.
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What is the purpose of fire and safety courses?
Fire and safety courses aim at providing a thorough qualification to potential candidates and train them to become different grades of fire officers.
Who is eligible to take up these courses?
The best part is, anyone who has finished his Secondary School Certificate (SSC) examination can go ahead and pursue the course, however, there are different courses designed for various professionals like an engineer who may also get a course done. Of course, there are various programs for professionals to specialize in.
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What are the different fire and safety courses in India?
There are various categories of courses one may pursue as the one which fits very well to the individual, as per the 7 categories mentioned below:
- The various Certificate courses
- The Industrial Training Institute courses
- The ‘Diploma in Fire and Safety courses
- in Fire and Safety
- Engineering courses in Fire and Safety
- Post Graduate Diploma (PGD) or a Degree in Fire and Safety
- The selective Fire and Safety courses
Let us try to decipher each of the above-mentioned courses and understand which course a particular candidate may pursue.
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The various certificate courses:
Generally, the duration of certificate courses is around 6-months. You may enroll in these courses if you have finished SSC or an equivalent like the CBSE board examination. Also, you need to be fluent in English and Hindi.
The most popular Certificate courses in fire and safety are as follows:
- Safety Management Certification Course
- Fire Safety and Hazard Management Certification Course
- Fireman Training Certification Course.
- Fire Safety and Security Management Certification Course
- Driver and Pump Operator Certification Course
- Industrial Safety Certification Course
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The Industrial Training Institute course
Several Industrial Training Institutes across India operate as autonomous bodies and somewhat provide similar certification courses across the country. You need to clear exams conducted by these organizations or the authorized state-run body to be qualified.
The eligibility criteria include you to clear SSC, HSC, or its equivalent to enroll for the stated courses:
- Certification in Fireman Training
- Certification Course for Sub Fire Officer
- Certification in Fire Prevention & Safety Course.
- Fire Officer Certification Course.
- Certification in Fire Systems Operations course
The duration of these courses is about 1 year each.
You may get opportunities to work in fire departments and fire brigades that are run by the state governments and municipalities, banks, state-owned companies, and various ministries.
The ‘Diploma in Fire and Safety courses’
These courses enable the candidates to establish a flourishing career with exhaustive training and lectures. More than this, you should also consider that owing to the high demand for more safety personnel, the need for these professionals is increasingly high.
The eligibility criteria lie similar for this profile, as well. You need to finish SSC, or HSC so that you may enroll in these diploma courses in fire and safety.
The course duration is approximately 11 to 12 months. Let us check out some of these courses, below:
- Fire Safety and Engineering Diploma course
- Industrial Safety Diploma course
- Fire and Hazard Prevention Diploma course
- Fire Fighting Equipment and Maintenance Diploma course
You may also opt for Diploma and Advanced Diploma courses in fire and safety if you are a BSc graduate.
BSc. in Fire and Safety
Many reputed Indian Universities are offering graduation courses with a specialization in Fire and Safety courses, this is due to the increasing demand for fire safety professionals in all fields.
A Bachelor’s degree in Fire and safety can indeed, be very beneficial for the sole reason, that, you own the eligibility to study further in this domain or stream. You may pursue a PG Diploma or a Master’s Degree in Fire and safety departmental studies. Doesn’t that sound and seem good, as higher qualifications reward you with better job prospects and handsome pay.
To study the BSc safety courses, you need minimum eligibility of being HSC qualified or an equivalent.
Below are some of the BSc Fire and Safety courses, that you may pursue:
- BSc. in Fire, and Safety.
- BSc. in Industrial Safety.
- BSc. in Health Safety and Environment.
Engineering courses in Fire and Safety
When it comes to Engineering, not many colleges offer courses on this subject. Nevertheless, top engineering colleges do provide special courses on Fire and safety. Many tier 1 engineering colleges have undertaken this subject and incorporated it into their curriculum as ‘advanced fire and safety training’.
Some private universities in India do offer B Tech in Fire and Safety.
- Engineering degree in Fire Safety and Hazard Prevention
- Engineering degree in Industrial Risk Assessment.
Post Graduate Diploma (PGD) or a Degree in Fire and Safety
There are true, courses specially designed for candidates who hold either a Diploma certificate or has a Bachelor’s degree in Fire and safety streams. So if you are the one who wishes to go for further studies and specialization after Bachelor’s, you may opt for Post Graduate Diploma in related safety streams.
- Advanced Diploma in Industrial Safety.
- Advanced Diploma in Safety Management.
- PG Diploma in Fire Safety and Hazard Management.
- PG Diploma in Industrial Safety.
- PGD in Health Safety and Environment.
- PG Diploma in Fire and Risk Assessment.
Some of the MSc courses are as listed below:
- MSc in Health, Safety, and Management.
- MSc in Fire Safety and Hazard Management.
The selective Fire and Safety courses
Owing to the importance of this subject in today’s age, colleges and Universities have opened up a myriad of opportunities to add some of the most intriguing courses, some are briefed as follows:
- MBA (Master of Business Administration) in Fire and Safety:
Recently, many deemed Universities and few state-run institutes have launched MBA in Fire and safety courses. You may go for it if you wish to gain a degree in safety services.
The duration is usually 2-3 years, depending on the institute you enroll in.
- Course on Basic Fire and Safety:
Many private institutions do offer this course, however, it is not a degree. You receive a certificate of completion. This course equips you with fire and safety rules, norms and also you get to know about protocols on fire-fighting and emergency evacuation.
- The Paramedics Course:
As you have medical courses like MBBS, BDS, etc., you also have paramedical courses like Radiology, Physiotherapy, and so on. It is observed that, along with these paramedical courses, some medical institutes are also including this subject as a part of their syllabus, while others are making it optional.
- First Responders Course:
Generally undertaken for the hotel management students to make them aware of any sudden fire-related mishaps in the hotel. Generally, this course aims at the quick responsive ability of an individual and skills the candidate on fire safety protocols along with the evacuation process. Any fire at the restaurant or in any guest rooms needs immediate attention and presence of mind to use the skill, you may opt for this course while pursuing hotel management.
- Course on Damage Assessment:
It is a short course provided by many private institutes to train the staff, most insurance companies to assess the damage caused at a premise that is gutted by fire. It is an important course in determining the assets owned and lost by a person to be determined.
Fire and Safety Institutes and Organizations
It is important to note the options of colleges and institutes that offer these courses along with placement or networking opportunities for the candidates. Many reputed institutes and organizations offer courses on fire and safety, to name a few, some are listed below:
- National Academy of Fire and Safety Engineering (NAFS), established in Nagpur.
- National Institute of Fire Engineering and Safety Management (NIFE/NIFS), built-in Vishakapatnam.
- All India Institute of Local Self Government found in states like Bhopal, Jodhpur, Nagpur, Rajkot, Vadodara.
- Cochin Institute of Science and Technology, Kochi.
- Fire and Safety Association of India
- Safety Engineers Association, Chennai.
Safety professionals are needed in almost every industry today. Name it, and there is a fire hazard. Be it industries, or concrete jungle residences in our overpopulated country, or educational institutes, Hospitals, anywhere and everywhere. Therefore, it has now opened a lot of job prospects if you are a suitably qualified professional.
- Electricity providers and power plant
- Environment Protection Departments
- Airports, Indian Railways
- Automobile Manufacturers
- Fire Departments/ Fire Brigades of governments, municipalities, and large corporations
- Hospitality Industry
- Oil, gas, and hydrocarbon fuels
- Real Estate & Construction
- Municipal Corporations
- Large manufacturing industries
- Banks & Insurance Companies
- Engineering Sectors
- Forest Department
- Ports, Shipping
Fire and Safety Jobs
If you are a qualified professional, there will not be any dearth of job openings and opportunities. With a hard-working nature, coupled with a suitable degree and an understanding of the risks involved with this department, there is a pool of opportunities present. A few are stated below:
- Fire Sub-Officer: If you are designated as a Fire sub-officer, you would be stationed at fire brigades and fire departments of companies.
- Fire Officer: If you are designated as a Fire officer, you would need to be in charge of the fire brigades and fire departments in the corporate sector.
- Safety Officer: As a safety officer, you would be designated at large companies, banks, petroleum, and energy firms, electricity generation plants, printing presses, large residential complexes, construction companies, hotels, and the hospitality industry, among others.
- Fireman: The fireman is a general term for first responders to fires. You can apply for this position with a basic fire and safety certificate, as stated above. Ample companies are looking for firemen in almost every type of industry.
- Safety Engineer: if you are a safety engineer, you are required by all the industries. But, the highest job offers are released for the safety engineers and are in great demand in oil and gas companies. Handsome salaries are paid to safety engineers who are employed on oil rigs, refineries, and related installations.
- Risk Assessor: As a risk assessor, you need to analyze the possible risk posed by fire at places like Residential complexes, Hotels, Restaurants, Industries, fuel stations, etc. Mostly the recruitment occurs in insurance companies and banks as there is a higher risk of assets and documents being charred by fire.
- Fire Investigators: As a fire investigator, you are mostly hired by the insurers and banks as well as fire brigades. Your job would be to analyze and investigate the reason for a fire breakout and thereby find the loopholes in fire prevention and detect the cause or negligence.
- Safety Instructors: this a trainer job profile. If you get selected and employed as a safety officer, your job would be to make a group of people, in an organization, aware of all the safety protocols, how to react quickly in case of a fire by saving their own lives and helping others do so. You would also need to teach a fire extinguishing technique followed by first aid.
- Loss Prevention Experts and Consultants: you can be getting the job of a Loss prevention expert and consultant at insurance companies, banks, hotels, etc, your job profile would be to keep track of the losses incurred due to fire and provide expert solutions to curb the losses in case of a fire break out. You need to make plans to keep important types of equipment such as fire extinguishers, safety alarms, and other related equipment where it should be installed.
- Logistics Fire and Safety Experts: As the term goes, the safety of the crew or people from hazardous substances like the highly inflammable shipments of petroleum products, noxious gases, firecrackers, explosives, and chemicals is the main job profile of a logistics and safety expert. A country like India needs such professionals. These experts play a key role in ensuring that no undue mishaps occur while moving the inflammable cargo by road or rail, or by sea.
- Equipment Testing Experts: As the term implies, as an equipment testing expert, you need to check the fire extinguishers installed at residential premises, offices, workshops, and factories while it gets installed, to check its efficiency. While many of you won’t be aware, these need to get refilled every year, each time it is refilled, it needs to be checked by a professional before left to be used. You also need to check stuff like instant availability of water from fire hydrants, test fire alarms, and similar equipment.
Regardless of which position you work, as a fire and safety expert, you need to participate and also conduct fire drills from time to time, for the employees of the organization. This is usually done in collaboration with the local fire brigade, Emergency medical service, police, and other civil defense branches such as home guards.
These frills help make the employees prepare themselves for any uncertain situations regarding safety protocols.
These drills include testing of the fire alarm systems, panic prevention, first responders’ actions, evacuation protocols, the total arrival time of the fire brigade, EMS, police, and other civil defense staff to reach the drill site. Based on a cumulative observation, a report is prepared on the same as submitted.
Fire and Safety Salaries
As per the US-based PayScale, which keeps tabs on salaries and remuneration trends worldwide, an expert in fire and safety in India earns somewhere between 14,000 to 60,000 Indian rupees per month. However, the value depends upon designation, organization, qualification, and years of experience.
A fire and safety officer makes about 25,000 Indian rupees per month whereas, a Fireman draws around Rs.27,000 per month as salary. Similarly, Fire Fighters draw around Rs 32,500 per month and Fire Protection Engineers earn around Rs.16,800 per month. These salaries are purely indicative and based on inputs from Glassdoor and PayScale.
You may earn a better salary than this, considering your qualification, expertise, and years of experience.
Fire and Safety Business
If you are a qualified person with years of good experience, you may also start a business on fire and safety by setting up working from home or set up a small office. This safety-related business is in high demand. You may set up businesses related to manufacturing of Fire extinguishers, Refilling and testing fire extinguishers, dealer of safety pieces of equipment which includes smoke detectors, fire alarms, and of course, fire extinguishers.
You may even consider starting Consultancy Services on Fire and safety, set up a private assessment service, or set up an institute to train people on fire and safety services.
India is not well equipped yet, with these required services in all parts of the country. It is more concentrated towards the metropolitan cities, hence there is a dire need to set up the services urgently across India and so, the scope is huge.
Let us look at the shocking grim statistics related to fire accidents in India.
According to a Times Of India report, dated December 22, 2019, every 5th fire death in the world is in India. It is indeed, surprising that, with such a huge population, and claimed to be a developing nation, where is the security required to prevent these accidents?
As per the data collected from the National Crime Records Bureau and Open Government Data of India, on average, at least 55 people die, daily due to fire-related mishaps across India. Also, it needs to be noted that, this is the official figure that was reported to the Police department, there might be many more of such cases that went unreported.
Among 80% of fire, fatalities were observed to be women, as per reports from NCRB. However, recently there is a spike in such deaths among the elderly and children as well. It is attributed that, women, children and the elderly suffer more owing to household fires caused by short-circuits and kitchen accidents. And carelessness like keeping the gas knob switched on, forgetting it to turn off, leading to major fire accidents.
Not just the household fires are caused by short circuits, but also many industries have reported the same cause of mishaps.
In restaurants and hotels, the staff needs to be very diligent and alert, over kitchen and room consumption usage of fire and electricity.
Forest fires, which cause a lot of damage to the natural reserves, are difficult to be dozed off, thus gutting away acres of land and numerous trees and resources.
With the current scenario of increasing fire accidents and relatively less equipped professionals to deal with the same, people are facing an immediate need to bridge the gap. Therefore, the demand for fire and safety personnel is very high. You may consider the relative risks involved in this profession and if you want to pursue a career in this field, now is the right time to do so.
Given this scenario, people are becoming more aware of fire prevention and the importance of safety. Hence, learning through a great fire and safety course can brighten your career while helping the nation.