CPAT Orientation, What Should I Wear? 

CPAT Orientation, What Should I Wear? 

So you want to be a firefighter. CPAT Orientation is where you will get the best training in this field. A lot is involved in becoming a firefighter, including certifications, discipline, and hard work. Included here, you will find the necessary information to be ready for the CPAT Orientation and Training Course.

What you should wear to the CPAT Orientation are long pants, shoes that have closed toes and heels, and remember that NO jewelry is permitted.    

Not all states and counties require you to attend a CPAT training course to be eligible to become a firefighter. Most VOLUNTEER departments across the country do not require CPAT certification. These departments offer their own training as necessary. 

NOT every Full Paid Department requires CPAT Certification to become a firefighter. Please contact your local department to find out if CPAT is required. 

Proper Attire For CPAT Orientation 

“Throughout all events, you must wear long pants, a hard hat with chinstrap, work gloves, and footwear with no open heel or toe. Watches and loose or restrictive jewelry are not permitted.” 

CPAT Orientation, What Should I Wear? 

Comfortable long pantsjeans, or sweat pants.  

Closed-toe and heel shoes, tennis shoes, running shoes are ideal. 

No Jewelry, jewelry can interfere with the activities and training involved in the CPAT Orientation. Remember to leave your jewelry at home. 

Other Attire That Will Be Used During CPAT Testing 

Helmets or hard hats with chin straps, gloves, and boots will be needed and used during certain training activities. 

Helmets, Wearing these during certain activities allows the candidate to understand not only the importance of their use but how they will affect the individual during actual live calls. 

Gloves, It is essential to understand how working with gloves will affect the mobility of your hands. It is different pulling a hose with gloves than without. 

Boots, Walking, running, climbing, and crawling are tasks that will be required of you as a firefighter. It is essential to learn how to do all these functions wearing this equipment. The simple task of walking is entirely different in firefighter boots than it is in running shoes. 

Why What You Wear Is Important 

A walkthrough of the course and what is expected of prospective candidates during training will be part of the orientation.  

It is crucial to wear proper clothing to show that you not only have the common sense to become a firefighter but that you can follow the rules and guidelines established by this training course.  

Your clothing will say a lot about you as a person. Coming to orientation in shorts, a t-shirt, and flip flops will outwardly show that you have no respect for the department or the training necessary. These guidelines are implemented to protect you, therefore following the instructions provided are vital for you as well as the department. 

Orientation vs. Training Attire 

CPAT Orientation, What Should I Wear? 

Although you may just be doing a walkthrough and filling out paperwork during orientation, training will be a completely different atmosphere. Having comfortable and proper attire for both is essential; both are equally as important to prospective candidates and the safety and integrity of the department.

Orientation is a time for potential firefighter candidates to understand what will be involved in the training and testing set forth by many departments across the country. During the orientation, as stated earlier, you may do a walkthrough of the course. You may also be given information on the test you will be expected to pass, both the physical and written test must be passed to qualify to become a firefighter.  

 A short video will be watched during orientation to show you what the 8 CPAT physical ability tests will involve as well as verbal instruction on training programs and techniques you can use to help yourself be prepared for testing.  

During your time at orientation, you may be given the opportunity for a hands-on experience of the equipment that you will use during testing as well as be able to examine some of the tools, props, and the setting of the testing site. At this time, you may be given the opportunity to try each of the 8 required events necessary to pass the test. 

 Information will be given to you before you leave regarding other platforms at your disposal to assist you in having the best chance at passing CPAT testing, such as online material and videos.  

 There will be instructors on-site; you should take this time to ask any questions you might have. These are seasoned firefighters and will be able to help you determine your best route and training needed to successfully pass all the physical agility evaluations as well as the written test portion.  

The dress code, as indicated above, is required for your safety and comfort during orientation. Due to the hands-on examination of future testing protocols, the CPAT facility sets these standards for your protection. 

Some of the training will include Stair Climb, Hose Drag, Equipment Carry, and Search and Rescue techniques.  

Stair Climb, “For this event, you must wear two 12.5-pound (5.67 kg) weights on your shoulders to simulate the weight of a high-rise pack.”  

These packs help the candidate to understand the weight of the equipment they will be required to use on the job, and how it affects them physically. 

Hose Drag, the use of gloves for this activity will serve not only as protection for your hands but also teach you how to manipulate up to 75 ft. of hose without the sensations you get from bare hands. 

Equipment Carry. During this activity, you will be wearing weights on your shoulders, gloves, and boots. It is crucial to understand and teach your body how to function correctly with extra weight and loss of certain normal sensations. Carrying equipment from the truck to the scene without dropping, losing your grip, tripping, or any other faulty action can save lives. 

CPAT Orientation, What Should I Wear? 

Search, you will understand during this activity why comfortable long pants are required. You will be crawling on your hands and knees through a maze, searching for possible victims. 

Rescue, this is why you become a firefighter. This event will train you on how to rescue victims of the fire. Grabbing and dragging a mannequin, from point A to point B without dropping it. It is crucial to have on comfortable shoes and long pants during this activity to prevent any damage to your legs and feet. 

The information provided here is not meant to be a complete list of the activities you may be required to perform during the training portion of attending a CPAT course. Expect and be ready for anything. Take the information you are given during orientation seriously as if your life depends on it because if you are one of the lucky ones that pass all required tests, one day, it just might. 

Orientation is the first step to achieving the desired result. Actively participate in any requests, activities, and question and answer areas. Take your time during orientation to absorb all the information given to you. The individuals you will be learning from our seasoned firefighters with firsthand knowledge of what is expected for the job and from you as a person. Keep your eyes and ears open. 

What about attire for the written exam? Read more here:

Related Questions

What happens if I don’t wear the right clothing to CPAT training? 

Following the CPAT standards, all candidates must wear long pants, footwear with no open heel or toe, and no loose or restrictive jewelry. Lack of proper dress code will constitute an automatic fail, without fee reimbursement.”,automatic%20fail%2C%20without%20fee%20reimbursement.  

You can sign up again for another training course. Just remember, the same instructors may be there the next time you come in. What you wear shows who you are as a person, and right now, you are being judged on that.  

A lack of respect for the profession and those in it, maybe the one first time impression you will not be able to erase from these instructors’ minds.   

What are the requirements to apply for the CPAT to become a firefighter? 

There are several requirements needed. First, you must be 18 years or older. Additionally, you will be required to have a valid government-issued ID, have the capability of passing a physical ability test, so be in shape, have a high school diploma or GED and pass a psychological assessment. 

Other things to consider before you apply for the CPAT are.  

  • Your social media may be evaluated, how clean is your social media and how does it represent you?  
  • Do you have a record? We have all made mistakes, don’t try and hide them.  
  • How involved have you been in your community preceding your desire to become a firefighter? This is the same community you are vowing to protect. So show that you care. 
  • Have you been fiscally responsible? Do you pay your bills on time? A background check and a credit check will be performed, and bad credit can harm the outcome of your application. 

 Will a felony keep me from qualifying for the CPAT? 


You will not be able to attend CPAT orientation or training if you have been convicted of a felony. Unless expunged, having a felony on your record will disqualify you from public service jobs.  

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Please note: This blog post is for educational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Please consult a legal expert to address your specific needs.