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Working As a Driver Engineer

  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material
  • Performing General Physical Activities
  • Handling and Moving Objects
  • $87,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Driver Engineer Do

Firefighters control and put out fires, and respond to emergency situations where life, property, or the environment is at risk.

Duties

Firefighters typically do the following:

  • Drive fire trucks and other emergency vehicles
  • Put out fires using water hoses, fire extinguishers, and water pumps
  • Find and rescue victims in burning buildings or in other emergency situations
  • Treat sick or injured people
  • Prepare written reports on emergency incidents
  • Clean and maintain equipment
  • Conduct drills and physical fitness training
  • Provide public education on fire safety

When responding to an emergency, firefighters are responsible for connecting hoses to hydrants, operating the pumps that power the hoses, climbing ladders, and using other tools to break through debris. Firefighters also enter burning buildings to extinguish fires and rescue individuals. Many firefighters are responsible for providing medical attention. Two out of three calls to firefighters are for medical emergencies, not fires, according to the National Fire Protection Association.

Firefighters’ duties may change several times while they are at the scene of an emergency. In some cases they remain at disaster scenes for days, for example, rescuing trapped survivors and assisting with medical treatment.

When firefighters are not responding to an emergency, they are on call at a fire station. During this time, they regularly inspect equipment and perform practice drills. They also eat and sleep and remain on call, as their shifts usually last 24 hours.

Some firefighters also work in hazardous materials units and are specially trained to control and clean up hazardous materials, such as oil spills and chemical accidents. They work with hazardous materials removal workers in these cases.

Wildland firefighters are specially trained firefighters. They use heavy equipment and water hoses to control forest fires. They also frequently create fire lines—a swath of cut-down trees and dug-up grass in the path of a fire—to deprive a fire of fuel. They will also use prescribed fires to burn potential fire fuel under controlled conditions. Some wildland firefighters, known as smoke jumpers, parachute from airplanes to reach otherwise inaccessible areas.

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How To Become A Driver Engineer

Firefighters typically need a high school diploma and training in emergency medical services. Prospective firefighters must pass written and physical tests, complete a series of interviews, go through training at a fire academy, and hold an emergency medical technician (EMT) certification.

Applicants for firefighter jobs typically must be at least 18 years old and have a valid driver’s license. They must also pass a medical exam and drug screening to be hired. After being hired, firefighters may be subject to random drug tests and will also need to complete routine physical fitness assessments.

Education

The entry-level education needed to become a firefighter is a high school diploma or equivalent. However, some class work beyond high school, such as airway management and trauma care, is usually needed to obtain the emergency medical technician (EMT) basic certification. EMT requirements vary by city and state.

Training

Entry-level firefighters receive a few months of training at fire academies run by the fire department or by the state. Through classroom instruction and practical training, recruits study fire-fighting and fire-prevention techniques, local building codes, and emergency medical procedures. They also learn how to fight fires with standard equipment, including axes, chain saws, fire extinguishers, and ladders. After attending a fire academy, firefighters must usually complete a probationary period.

Some fire departments have accredited apprenticeship programs that last up to 4 years. These programs combine technical instruction with on-the-job-training under the supervision of experienced firefighters.

In addition to participating in training programs conducted by local or state fire departments and agencies, some firefighters attend federal training sessions sponsored by the National Fire Academy. These training sessions cover topics including anti-arson techniques, disaster preparedness, hazardous materials control, and public fire safety and education.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Usually, firefighters must be certified as emergency medical technicians at the EMT-Basic level. In addition, some fire departments require firefighters to be certified as an EMT-Paramedic. The National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) certifies EMTs and paramedics. Both levels of NREMT certification require completing a training or education program and passing the national exam. The national exam has both a written part and a practical part. EMTs and paramedics may work with firefighters at the scenes of accidents.

Some states have mandatory or voluntary firefighter training and certification programs. 

The National Fire Academy also offers an Executive Fire Officer certification. To be eligible, firefighters must have a bachelor's degree.

Other Experience

Working as a volunteer firefighter may help in getting a job as a career firefighter. 

Advancement

Firefighters can be promoted to engineer, then to lieutenant, captain, battalion chief, assistant chief, deputy chief, and, finally, chief. For promotion to positions beyond battalion chief, many fire departments now require applicants to have a bachelor's degree, preferably in fire science, public administration, or a related field. Some firefighters eventually become fire inspectors or investigators after gaining enough experience.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Firefighters must be able to communicate conditions at an emergency scene to other firefighters and to emergency-response crews.

Courage. Firefighters’ daily job duties involve dangerous situations, such as entering a burning building. 

Decisionmaking skills. Firefighters must be able to make quick and smart decisions in an emergency. The ability to make good decisions under pressure could potentially save someone’s life.

Physical stamina. Firefighters may have to stay at disaster scenes for long periods of time to rescue and treat victims. Fighting fires requires prolonged use of strength and endurance.

Physical strength. Firefighters must be strong enough to carry heavy equipment and move debris at an emergency site. They must also be able to carry victims who are injured or cannot walk.

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Average Yearly Salary
$87,000
Show Salaries
$47,000
Min 10%
$87,000
Median 50%
$87,000
Median 50%
$87,000
Median 50%
$87,000
Median 50%
$87,000
Median 50%
$87,000
Median 50%
$87,000
Median 50%
$161,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Apple
Highest Paying City
Palo Alto, CA
Highest Paying State
Alaska
Avg Experience Level
6.2 years
How much does a Driver Engineer make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Driver Engineer in the United States is $87,986 per year or $42 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $47,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $162,000.

Real Driver Engineer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Wireless Driver Engineer Aruba Networks, Inc. Sunnyvale, CA Dec 10, 2015 $145,000
Graphics & Display Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA May 07, 2012 $145,000
Graphics & Display Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Mar 19, 2012 $145,000
Graphics Display Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Oct 01, 2013 $145,000
Graphics Display Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA May 10, 2013 $145,000 -
$165,000
Audio Drivers Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Jun 18, 2015 $140,000 -
$160,000
Embedded Device Driver Engineer: Sensors Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Sep 12, 2013 $135,000 -
$155,000
Camera Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Jul 20, 2015 $130,000 -
$150,000
GPU Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA May 08, 2014 $130,000 -
$150,000
GPU Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Aug 05, 2014 $130,000 -
$150,000
Graphics 3D Drivers Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Oct 01, 2010 $125,000
GPU Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Dec 20, 2010 $120,000 -
$130,000
Graphics Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Jan 07, 2013 $120,000 -
$140,000
Embedded Device Driver Engineer: Sensors Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Aug 26, 2014 $115,253 -
$130,000
IP Telephony Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Oct 01, 2011 $115,000
IOS GPU Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Oct 01, 2011 $115,000
Iphone Device Driver Engineer: USB Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Oct 01, 2010 $115,000
Iphone Telephony Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Oct 01, 2011 $115,000
Iphone Modem Device Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Oct 01, 2011 $110,000
Video Codec Driver Engineer Apple, Inc. Cupertino, CA Jun 24, 2013 $109,138 -
$145,000
Senior Graphic Driver Engineer Augusta Technology USA, Inc. Santa Clara, CA Dec 01, 2011 $103,709
Embedded Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Oct 01, 2013 $102,000
GPU Drivers Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Aug 27, 2013 $100,000 -
$140,000
Iphone Telephony Driver Engineer Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Aug 01, 2011 $100,000
Windows Driver Engineer Formalized Design, Inc. Redmond, WA Jan 03, 2011 $100,000
Sales & Linux Device Driver Engineer Grace Technology Labs Inc. San Jose, CA Sep 02, 2015 $99,000

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Top Skills for A Driver Engineer

  1. Emergency Situations
  2. Emergency Vehicle
  3. Public Safety
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Operate emergency apparatus safely to and from emergency situations.
  • Maintain and repair emergency vehicle.
  • Perform firefighting operations, including regular drills, handling emergency responses, and ensuring public safety.
  • Operate fire apparatus at emergency scene including locating water supply, monitoring water pressure, raising and lowering ladders.
  • Served as contracted Fire Fighter / Paramedic attached to Lagrange and Lagrange Park Fire Departments.

Rank:

Average Salary:

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Top 10 Best States for Driver Engineers

  1. New Hampshire
  2. Rhode Island
  3. Massachusetts
  4. Connecticut
  5. Maine
  6. Delaware
  7. Alaska
  8. Pennsylvania
  9. New York
  10. New Jersey
  • (324 jobs)
  • (151 jobs)
  • (1,758 jobs)
  • (541 jobs)
  • (120 jobs)
  • (166 jobs)
  • (52 jobs)
  • (1,466 jobs)
  • (2,036 jobs)
  • (1,045 jobs)

Driver Engineer Demographics

Gender

Male

81.0%

Unknown

13.4%

Female

5.6%
Ethnicity

White

60.7%

Black or African American

13.7%

Hispanic or Latino

13.7%

Asian

8.6%

Unknown

3.4%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

75.0%

Carrier

25.0%

Driver Engineer Education

Schools

Columbia Southern University

10.6%

Community College of the Air Force

8.5%

University of Central Florida

6.4%

Grand Canyon University

6.4%

Eastern Michigan University

4.3%

University of Florida

4.3%

Polytechnic Institute of New York University

4.3%

Barry University

4.3%

Jacksonville State University

4.3%

University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

4.3%

Johnson County Community College

4.3%

Learey Technical Center

4.3%

University of Detroit Mercy

4.3%

Rust College

4.3%

Pikes Peak Community College

4.3%

University of Massachusetts - Lowell

4.3%

Palm Beach State College

4.3%

Auburn University

4.3%

University of Texas at Austin

4.3%

American InterContinental University

4.3%
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Majors

Fire Science And Protection

21.8%

Medical Technician

10.5%

Electrical Engineering

9.8%

Computer Science

7.5%

Business

6.8%

Mechanical Engineering

6.8%

Computer Engineering

5.3%

Management

3.8%

General Studies

3.8%

Public Administration

3.8%

Criminal Justice

3.8%

General Education, Specific Areas

3.0%

Medicine

2.3%

Accounting

2.3%

Science, Technology, And Society

1.5%

Writing

1.5%

Music

1.5%

Fine Arts

1.5%

Photography

1.5%

Industrial Technology

1.5%
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Degrees

Other

29.5%

Bachelors

26.8%

Associate

17.5%

Masters

16.9%

Certificate

4.4%

Diploma

2.2%

Doctorate

2.2%

License

0.5%
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Updated May 19, 2020