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Wages of middle 50 percent of protective service workers between $24,510 and $57,270 per year

September 29, 2015

In May 2014, nearly 3.3 million workers were employed in protective service occupations, a group that includes police officers, firefighters, correctional officers, security guards, and related workers. Of of all workers in protective service occupations, 50 percent earned more and 50 percent earned less than $37,180 per year (the annual median wage).

Annual mean and percentile wages and employment, protective service occupations, May 2014
Occupation Employment Annual wage
   Mean    10th percentile 25th percentile 50th percentile (median) 75th percentile 90th percentile

Protective Service Occupations

3,297,180 $43,980 $19,090 $24,510 $37,180 $57,270 $80,360

First-Line Supervisors of Police and Detectives

101,420 84,260 47,720 61,480 80,930 104,150 128,970

Detectives and Criminal Investigators

108,720 80,540 40,780 53,280 79,870 101,940 127,400

First-Line Supervisors of Fire Fighting and Prevention Workers

59,870 73,550 41,930 54,570 70,670 90,920 112,420

First-Line Supervisors of Correctional Officers

45,150 61,790 37,090 43,120 57,970 77,520 93,470

Police and Sheriff's Patrol Officers

638,810 59,560 33,030 42,260 56,810 74,870 92,450

Fire Inspectors and Investigators

11,370 58,980 34,010 42,990 56,130 73,050 90,330

Transit and Railroad Police

3,380 53,170 33,280 42,100 51,690 61,790 78,020

Fish and Game Wardens

5,820 53,260 32,660 40,700 50,880 62,320 75,690

Firefighters

308,790 48,750 22,130 31,340 45,970 61,950 81,450

First-Line Supervisors of Protective Service Workers, All Other

67,310 48,440 26,420 34,120 45,830 58,500 74,810

Private Detectives and Investigators

26,880 52,880 27,000 34,530 44,570 63,370 85,560

Correctional Officers and Jailers

434,420 44,910 27,280 32,390 39,780 55,670 72,790

Bailiffs

16,310 42,360 20,630 28,390 38,150 56,120 70,970

Transportation Security Screeners

43,220 38,600 32,770 35,470 38,090 41,090 45,560

Parking Enforcement Workers

8,680 37,750 22,040 27,830 36,570 46,930 56,200

Forest Fire Inspectors and Prevention Specialists

1,630 43,230 24,550 28,920 36,430 53,510 74,050

Animal Control Workers

13,450 34,370 20,390 25,800 32,560 41,010 51,630

Gaming Surveillance Officers and Gaming Investigators

10,030 32,290 20,850 25,120 29,840 37,810 47,740

Crossing Guards

66,310 27,040 17,520 19,440 24,750 32,060 38,540

Security Guards

1,077,520 28,040 17,720 20,060 24,410 32,650 44,200

Lifeguards, Ski Patrol, and Other Recreational Protective Service Workers

135,070 21,030 16,460 17,560 19,090 22,880 29,300

Annual wages less than $24,510 were earned by 25 percent of all protective service workers, while another 25 percent had annual wages of more than $57,270. Thus, the middle 50 percent of all those working in protective service occupations had wages between these amounts.

At the extremes, the lowest-paid 10 percent of workers in protective service occupations had annual wages less than $19,090, while the highest-paid 10 percent had annual wages over $80,360; thus, 80 percent of all protective service workers had wages between these amounts.

Within the protective service group, first-line supervisors of police and detectives and detective and criminal investigators had the highest wages. Median annual wages of first-line supervisors of police and detectives were $80,930 in May 2014. The middle 50 percent of these supervisors earned between $61,480 and $104,150 per year. Median annual wages of detective and criminal investigators were slightly lower, $79,870. The middle 50 percent of detective and criminal investigators earned between $53,280 and $101,940.

Crossing guards and security guards were among the protective service occupations with the lowest wages. Median annual wages for these occupations were below $25,000; the middle 50 percent of workers in these occupations earned between approximately $19,000 and $32,000. Wages for lifeguards, ski patrol, and other recreational protective service workers were even lower: the middle 50 percent of these workers earned between $17,560 and $22,880.

These data are from the Occupational Employment Statistics program. To learn more, see, Protective Service Occupations.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Wages of middle 50 percent of protective service workers between $24,510 and $57,270 per year on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2015/wages-of-middle-50-percent-of-protective-service-workers-between-24510-and-57270-per-year.htm (visited August 09, 2020).

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