Basic Fire School Qualification Program Firefighters and Wildland Firefighting
Recently a question was brought to our attention in regards to a Maine BLS inspection on training files. It was noted that those that hold a Basic Fire School (BFS) Qualification do not have training for wildland firefighting, due to the BFS program not containing a training on this subject.
If the individual employee (firefighter) has Firefighter I, Firefighter I Provisional, Firefighter II, National Wildfire Coordinating Group S-130 and/or a State of Maine documented program taught by Maine Forest Service, the individual is all set.
NOTE: Firefighters can take the above program on-line, however will not be completely certified until they complete an outdoor exercise with the Maine Forest Service.
Chief Gross of the Maine Forest Service has been overwhelmed with requests for their 12-hour program, and much like MFSI not being able to be at all 400 fire departments at one time, the Maine Forest Service cannot meet that demand. In the meantime we are all collaborating on a plan to help folks out with this issue. Chief Gross is working with his staff to put on regional programs to get the 12-hour Maine Forest Service training program throughout the State of Maine – Maine Wildland Fire External Training Schedule 2024.
MFSI can provide a block of four hours of training to meet this need, but again, we would prefer a regional approach, and there will be no certificate issues, simply progress charts. This is subject to instructor availability. In the meantime, MFSI has attached to this email the two page progress charts and you can utilize Jones & Bartlett 4th Edition Firefighter Skills Textbook (chapter 21). This will help you document the training appropriately.
Maine Bureau of Labor has agreed that if a firefighter has been trained in accordance with the attached progress charts, and are on file with the fire department they would consider them being trained commensurate with duties of wildland/groundcover fires.
For more information, please contact:
Maine Fire Service Institute
Maine Forest Service, Forest Protection Division