No matter what you do in your career, you probably feel a sense of accomplishment at the end of a long day’s work. And even if you’re dissatisfied with your current job, you might still feel that you’re making a difference somehow.

While all jobs are necessary to fill a specific need, some careers require going the extra mile. And those who work in these fields often have to place themselves in harm’s way. These are the jobs which allow us to live a certain quality of life, and to have certain things that sometimes we take for granted.

The truth is, there are many jobs out in the world which come along with a significant amount of risk and a high level of stress. And these jobs are worked by extraordinary brave men and women across the country.

Here, we’ll explore a few of the most dangerous jobs in the world that keep us safe and content.

Search and Rescue Personnel

Accidents happen. This is true of life no matter how you decide to look at it. And sometimes accidents happen that require the expert assistance of well-trained individuals.

When a plane goes down in a remote area, when a boater is stranded at sea, and when a skier gets smothered in an avalanche, there are a few brave men and women out there who will risk their lives to help search and hopefully, save a life.

Though there are many more instances that require search and rescue personnel, much of this work is extremely dangerous and can cost the lives of those who attempt a rescue.

Across the world, lifeguards, wildlife officials, first responders, and rescue teams lose their lives every year in hopes of saving just one person, and these actions should always be applauded.

Military Service

Without the men and women who sacrificed their lives to maintain our rights to freedom and our overall quality of life, we might all be speaking a different language today. The fact is, our military servicemen and women give up years of their own freedom, just so we can all have ours.

Military service, by definition, comes with a significant amount of risk. Not only could you lose your life on the battlefield, or in training, you could come away from years of service with serious debilitating conditions.

For example, many men and women who have served in the military have developed hearing loss due to working around extreme noise and high decibels.

In fact, between the years 2002 and 2015, the United States Department of Defense (DOD) issued 3M dual-ended combat arms earplugs to help protect service members. These devices were found to be faulty, and as a result, several military service members have developed tinnitus or total hearing loss.

As a result of hearing loss, many former service members have considered filing lawsuits due to 3M earplug use, a combat issued item that was not properly vetted.

Firefighters

It should go without saying that firefighters work in and around some of the most hazardous conditions possible. Not only do these men and women work in extreme heat and have to enter blazing infernos, they also risk developing serious long-term injuries that can last a lifetime.

Firefighters are our first responders, and many of these brave men and women hold dual roles as paramedics as well.

Many firefighters also take their careers to the next level and become wildfire fighters, hotshots, or smokejumpers, a job that is even more dangerous and unpredictable than a 4-alarm structural fire.

Without firefighters, many of our beloved historical structures and many precious lives would be lost in a most horrific way.

A career is a path, and it’s also part of a lifestyle that you’ll take with you for many years. No matter what career path you choose, ensure that you know the risks associated with the job at all costs, and make sure that the risks are those that you can accept.