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Fire Chief Salary

Fire Chiefs in the United States with more than 10 years of experience in their profession represent approximately nine-tenths of Fire Chiefs. Salaries average out to around $74K per year and spread from $46K to $119K per year. Most workers in this position report very high levels of job satisfaction. Medical benefits are awarded to a large number, and the greater part earn dental coverage. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$48,087 - $119,459
(Median)
$48K
$74K
$120K
MEDIAN: $74,123
10%
50%
90%

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$11.86 - $40.00
(Median)
$12
$23
$40
MEDIAN: $22.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$48,087 - $119,459  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,282  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$46,190 - $119,243  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 16 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 418
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$25$50$75
Hourly Rate
$11.86 - $40.00  
   
Overtime
$0.00 - $42.31  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $10,282  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$46,190 - $119,243  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 16 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 24

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United States (change)


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Job Description for Fire Chief

Fire chiefs are responsible for providing managerial and administrative direction within a fire department. Their role is one of leadership, and their responsibilities include: planning and supervising fire operations; coordinating fire programs and action plans with a city's government; supervising building inspections for fire hazards to ensure they meet safety standards; preparing the fire department's annual budget; reviewing new and replaced equipment; and performing training drills with other firefighters. Above all, they continue to engage in firefighting and provide rescue and medical services, though this is secondary to their administrative roles.

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Fire Chief Tasks

  • Manage personnel and equipment to maintain peak performance abilities.
  • Oversee medical responses as needed.
  • Evaluate scale and nature of reported fires while assigning appropriate teams to strategic locations for rescue of people and extinguishing flames.
  • Update, review, and report on personnel, equipment, and incidents.

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Pay by Experience Level for Fire Chief

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


For Fire Chiefs, experience does not seem to be a major factor in determining pay. The median compensation for relatively untried workers is $64K; in the five-to-10 year group, it's higher at around $65K. Fire Chiefs see a median salary of $66K after reaching one to two decades on the job. In the end, the overall pattern seems to be that more experience generally corresponds to higher pay; a Fire Chief with more than 20 years of experience can earn $79K on average.

United States (change)

Experience Affects Fire Chief Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 8%

National Average
$73,000

Experienced
up arrow 10%

Mid-Career
up arrow 11%

Entry-Level
up arrow 12%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 67 votes.

Gender

Female
3 %
Male
97 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
0%
1-4 years
2%
5-9 years
8%
10-19 years
25%
20 years or more
65%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 87% dental benefits Dental: 69%
vision benefits Vision: 56% employee benefits None: 11%
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