Marine Corps Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting Specialist – MOS 7051

These Marines fight fires and conduct safety and rescue missions

Firefighting specialists on a tarmack extinguish a fire in a helicopter during a training exercise.
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Although their duties are similar in nature to Marine Corps firefighters, the aircraft rescue and firefighting specialist—military occupational specialty (MOS) 7051—are also are tasked with performing aircraft rescues.

This is considered a primary MOS. It's open to Marines ranking from private to master gunnery sergeant.

Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting Specialist Job Description

Marines serving as an aircraft rescue and firefighting specialist use firefighting equipment and extinguishing materials to rescue victims involved in aircraft crashes and to fight fires. Typical duties include operating, servicing, inspecting, and testing aircraft rescue and firefighting systems, including rescue equipment, as well as instructing personnel in the techniques and procedures rescue and firefighting.

The Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) Specialists support airfield operations at Marine Corps bases and installations. The list of responsibilities for these Marines includes fire suppression, extrication and rescue, emergency medical services, salvage operations, and responding to hazardous material operations. 

When they're serving in support of a base, the ARFF platoon is also responsible for overseeing the fire protection and prevention program.

Qualifying as a MOS 7051

To be eligible for this job, you need a score of at least 95 on the mechanical maintenance (MM) section of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) tests. You'll have to complete the fire protection apprentice course for the Marine Corps, and meet the National Fire Protection Association medical standards, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration requirements. 

In addition, you'll need to have vision correctable to 20/20 and normal color vision (no colorblindness). The minimum height requirement for this job is 64 inches. 

Duties of MOS 7051

Up to the master gunnery sergeant level, these Marines assist in all phases of rescue incidents, administering first aid and CPR. It's up to them to refill and maintain fire extinguishers, inspect and maintain firefighting support equipment, protective clothing and self-contained breathing apparatus. 

In addition, they assist with hazardous materials incidents, act as firefighting dispatchers, and adhere to safety precautions when applying rescue and firefighting techniques. A particularly crucial part of this job is managing safety procedures when dealing with the crash of an aircraft carrying ordnance.

As the Marine's rank increases, the duties associated with this job increase as well. In addition to the tasks above, these duties may include performing life safety and fire prevention inspections, providing technical instruction to subordinate Marines, operating heavy equipment including support vehicles and preparing emergency operations plans and budgets. 

Civilian Jobs Similar to MOS 7051

Although much of what you'll learn as an aircraft rescue and firefighting specialist in the Marine Corps is specific to the military, there are numerous civilian jobs for which you'll be qualified.

Although you may need additional state and local certification or licensing, you should be able to find work as a fire investigator, a municipal fire fighting and prevention supervisor or as a hazardous materials removal worker.

You'll also be qualified to drive industrial trucks and tractors and could work as a first-line supervisor of transportation and vehicle operators.