This Coffee Break Bulletin explains how the National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) promotes interoperable wildland fire operations and works to ensure an efficient, effective and safe response to wildland fires.
The NWCG was established in 1976 to manage federal agency fire management programs and ensure they work together to prevent wasteful duplication. Through NWCG leadership, federal agencies are able to share and mobilize resources, allowing them to respond seamlessly to wildland fires across the nation.
Promoting interoperability through standards
NWCG member agencies develop standards for training, equipment, aircraft, fire weather, suppression, and other operational areas so that they can better respond to wildland fires. These standards benefit state fire agencies and local fire and EMS departments as well. When adopted, NWCG standards can help fire and EMS departments prepare for, and respond to, wildland incidents and promote interoperability across jurisdictional boundaries. Departments that follow the standards can be deployed anywhere in the country for wildfire assignments, as well as all-hazards assignments with wildland fire teams.
Resources for fire and EMS departments
On the NWCG’s website, you will find information on the standards developed by the federal member agencies to respond to wildland incidents, as well as:
- Training courses.
- Job aids.
- Position task books.
- ICS forms.
- The National Fire Equipment Catalog.
- Information on how to become a wildland firefighter.
NWCG member agencies
Listed in the order of which they joined, the current NWCG members are:
- U.S. Forest Service
- Bureau of Indian Affairs
- Bureau of Land Management
- National Park Service
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
- National Association of State Foresters
- U.S. Fire Administration
- Intertribal Timber Council
- International Association of Fire Chiefs
Action step for learning more about interoperable wildland fire operations
Visit the NWCG’s website.