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Written Test Prep


The test measures reading comprehension, mathematics, and mechanical aptitude.

The Firefighter written test will assess the following:

  • Reading Comprehension - Ability to read, comprehend and apply detailed, complex materials of a technical or legal nature.
  • Mathematics - Ability to do arithmetic (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, ratios, and the use and conversion of decimals, fractions and percentages.)
  • Mechanical Aptitude - Knowledge of simple machines, such as levers, wheels, and belt drives sufficient to use hand tools such as pry bars, shovels, axes, and chain saws effectively and to predict the effects of changes in operating forces such as determining the safest place to cut through a wall in a burning structure or where to put a jack to support a partially overturned vehicle.

The test is not intended to be one you have to study for. It is based on a high school education. We strongly urge:

  • When you read, concentrate on what you are reading. Try to understand its full meaning and implications.
  • Read articles or books on practical subjects. Exactly what you read is not nearly as important as how well you use it to sharpen your reading skills. So choose a subject that interests you.
  • After reading a paragraph or section, put it aside and test yourself on it. Ask such questions as: How can I state the main idea using different words? Why is the statement true? How could I make practical use of this information?
  • Review and practice mathematical computations and applications.
  • Review mechanical aptitude practice problems to familiarize yourself with the types of questions that may be asked.

Below are some suggested links to some basic preparatory information for reading comprehension, mathematics, and mechanical aptitude. The first two links include sample questions, study tips, and activities that will help you to brush up on your reading comprehension and math skills. Also included below is a link to some sample mechanical aptitude questions for you to practice and review.

Please note: We do not endorse any of the websites suggested above nor do we recommend anything that is being sold through these websites. You may be able to find other free test prep information through your own internet search that may be helpful to you.


Questions in the Firefighter written test may be either multiple-choice or true/false. This means that each question gives you a set of answers from which to choose. You are to choose the one answer that is the best one, the one most nearly or most often correct, or the one usually true for you. Here is an example. It makes a very important point, so pay special attention to it.

The number of days in a year is

  1. 365
  2. 366
  3. 367
  4. 368

The answer you should choose is choice A, because it is the one which is most often correct. Choice B is true for leap years, but most years have 365 days. Therefore, choice A is the best answer.

Click here for some more preparation tips and sample questions.

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