Forest Fire Inspectors and Prevention Specialists

Also called: District Ranger, Environmental Protection Fire Control Officer, Fire Management Officer, Fire Management Technician, Fire Observer

Varies

estimated salary

Forest fire inspectors and prevention specialists enforce fire regulations, inspect forests for fire hazards, and recommend forest fire prevention or control measures. May report forest fires and weather conditions.

  • Relay messages about emergencies, accidents, locations of crew and personnel, and fire hazard conditions.
  • Conduct wildland firefighting training.
  • Estimate sizes and characteristics of fires, and report findings to base camps by radio or telephone.
  • Direct crews working on firelines during forest fires.
  • Locate forest fires on area maps, using azimuth sighters and known landmarks.
  • Extinguish smaller fires with portable extinguishers, shovels, and axes.
  • Patrol assigned areas, looking for forest fires, hazardous conditions, and weather phenomena.
  • Compile and report meteorological data, such as temperature, relative humidity, wind direction and velocity, and types of cloud formations.
  • Examine and inventory firefighting equipment, such as axes, fire hoses, shovels, pumps, buckets, and fire extinguishers, to determine amount and condition.
  • Educate the public about fire safety and prevention.
  • Direct maintenance and repair of firefighting equipment, or requisition new equipment.
  • Maintain records and logbooks.
  • Administer regulations regarding sanitation, fire prevention, violation corrections, and related forest regulations.
  • Restrict public access and recreational use of forest lands during critical fire seasons.
  • Inspect camp sites to ensure that campers are in compliance with forest use regulations.
  • Inspect forest tracts and logging areas for fire hazards such as accumulated wastes or mishandling of combustibles, and recommend appropriate fire prevention measures.
Work Context
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 94% responded "Very important results".
  • Face-to-Face Discussions — 90% responded "Every day".
  • Work With Work Group or Team — 90% responded "Extremely important".
  • Contact With Others — 79% responded "Constant contact with others".
  • Telephone — 78% responded "Every day".
  • Electronic Mail — 76% responded "Every day".
  • In an Enclosed Vehicle or Equipment — 69% responded "Every day".
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Work Activities
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
  • Performing General Physical Activities — Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
  • Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment — Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
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Detailed Work Activities
  • Relay information about incidents or emergencies to personnel using phones or two-way radios.
  • Direct fire fighting or prevention activities.
  • Assess characteristics of fires.
  • Relay information about incidents or emergencies to personnel using phones or two-way radios.
  • Direct fire fighting or prevention activities.
  • Operate firefighting equipment.
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Knowledge

Administration and Management
  • Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Customer and Personal Service
  • Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Education and Training
  • Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
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Skills

Critical Thinking
  • Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Coordination
  • Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
Speaking
  • Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Judgment and Decision Making
  • Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
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Abilities

Problem Sensitivity
  • The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Oral Expression
  • The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Oral Comprehension
  • The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Near Vision
  • The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
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Personality

People interested in this work like activities that include ideas, thinking, and figuring things out.
They do well at jobs that need:
  • Achievement/Effort
  • Persistence
  • Initiative
  • Leadership
  • Cooperation
  • Concern for Others
  • Social Orientation
  • Self Control
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Technology

You might use software like this on the job:

Word processing software
  • Microsoft Word Hot Technology
Data base user interface and query software
  • Fire incident reporting systems
Map creation software
  • Mapping software