New standards for Wildland Fire Modules

Minimum Wildland Fire Module standards

The National Wildfire Coordinating Group has released new standards for Wildland Fire Modules (WFM), which a few years ago were called Fire Use Modules. WFMs are frequently used for conducting prescribed fires, monitoring and managing long-term “fire use” fires, and for fuel modification projects.

The most significant change is the establishment of Type 1 and Type 2 Modules, when before there was no typing system. If you ordered a WFM you could receive a highly skilled group of firefighters that included a Type 2 Burn Boss and several Module members with significant Red Card qualifications. Or not.

The new standards, published in a 42-page document, require that a Type 1 WFM have a leader who is qualified as a Task Force Leader and Crew Boss. And there must be members on the Module who are a Type 2 Burn Boss, Type 4 Incident Commander, Firing Boss, and Field Observer. The leader of a Type 2 WFM must be a Crew Boss and there must be one Squad Boss who is a Type 5 Incident Commander. A Module must have at least seven qualified individuals for dispatch to an incident.

Below is a portion of the chart showing the minimum Module standards. Click on it to see a larger version.

Minimum Wildland Fire Module standards

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

6 thoughts on “New standards for Wildland Fire Modules”

  1. re·cog·ni·zance (r-kgn-zns, -kn-)
    1. Law
    a. An obligation of record that is entered into before a court or magistrate, containing a condition to perform a particular act, such as making a court appearance.
    b. A sum of money pledged to assure the performance of such an act.
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  2. Bill –

    Any idea how many modules fit the “Type 1” requirements? I know we’ve lost a NPS module or two, but a few Forest Service Modules have stepped it up (along with the Southern Rockies TNC Module).

  3. One thing that seems vague is the “Full Time Organized Crew” requirement. Do all 7-10 people have to work together, or can only 2-3, and the rest of the positions get filled in with detailers. I do think this is a good move, since it will help clarify expectations and reality, especially for situations when a Type 1 module isn’t required, such as fuels projects. It’ll also make it easier for district fuels crews to get out on fires without having to put together a Type 2 handcrew.


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