This page is intended to help media locate information, request interviews, and answer frequently asked questions.
Are you looking for fire statistics?
Check out our Fire Information page to find national fire data and links to other sources.
Do you want to interview wildland fire personnel?
NIFC Contact Information
For interviews or information related to national level fire management, please call the NIFC Fire Information line: 208-387-5050. This line is monitored daily, so if you do not reach someone right away, please leave a voice mail with your name, phone number, and details about your inquiry and a public affairs specialist will return your call.
Do you have wildland fire management policy & regulations questions?
Interagency wildland fire management standards, policy, and guidance can be found here: https://www.nifc.gov/standards
Requirements for media visiting the fireline can be found in the Interagency Standards for Fire and Aviation Operations or “Red Book”, Chapter 7, page 186, Safety for Personnel Visiting Fires.*
*These requirements are also listed below in the Responding to a Fire Incident section.
Do you want to interview a wildland firefighter?
NIFC is a headquarters office and therefore, wildland firefighters are not based on the NIFC campus. Agency wildand fire programs are located throughout the West, so if you are interested in interviewing a firefighter or other wildland fire personnel, a NIFC public affairs specialist will work with you to find the appropriate personnel.
It is important to keep in mind that, during periods of intense fire activity, most wildland fire personnel are assigned to wildfire incidents, fire stations, or are conducting field work, so wildland firefighting personnel interview opportunities may be limited.
Do you want to interview a smokejumper?
The BLM Great Basin smokejumpers are based on the NIFC campus, next to the Boise airport. However, from about June to October, smokejumpers are assigned to wildfire incidents and outstations. Thus, it may not be possible to interview a smokejumper from about June until October, as they are not located on the NIFC campus and often do not have cell phone access on wildfire incidents.
Do you want to film a documentary or long-term production?
NIFC receives numerous documentary and long-term filming requests every year, particularly requests to “embed” with fire crews. Embedding journalists or film crews often requires several weeks or months of advance planning and there are safety and operational considerations before embedding projects can be submitted for approval. If you are requesting an embedding operation or long-term production, plan for a minimum of one to two months of advance work, and planning before your request could be approved. In many situations, embedding requests are not approved because of logistics and safety issues.
Always check in with the local agency and the incident information officers before filming to learn about basic guidelines as well as any COVID-related regulations.
Process and permits for filming features - link to FS and BLM process
- USFS Event and Commercial Permits
- USFS Region 3 Film Permits
- BLM Film Permitting Process
- NPS Commercial Filming & Still Photography Permits
- Documentary and Film Producer's Guide to Filming
Responding to a Fire Incident
Before arriving at an incident reporters must have the proper protective equipment, or PPE.
- Flame resistant long sleeve shirt and trousers
- Wildland fire boots
- Leather gloves
- Helmet with chin strap
- Eye protection
- Ear protection
Minimum Requirements for Visits to the Fireline/RX Burns
(source: Interagency Standards for Fire and Aviation Operations or “Red Book”, Chapter 7)
Visits (such as media visits or political/administrative tours) to hazardous areas of the fire or areas that pose a fire behavior threat will be managed by meeting the requirements below:
- Visits to the fireline must have the approval of the incident commander or burn boss.
- Visitors must maintain communications with the division supervisor or appropriate fireline supervisor of the area they are visiting.
- Required fireline PPE as referenced in the personal protective equipment 27 section of this chapter.
- Required field attire:
- Undergarments made of 100 percent or the highest possible content of 30 natural fibers or flame-resistant materials.
- Required equipment/supplies:
- Hand tool
- Water canteen
Visitors to the fireline/RX burns may be “Non-Escorted” or “Escorted” depending on the following requirements:
Visitors must have an incident qualification with a minimum physical fitness 38 level of “light” to visit the fireline unescorted.
- Must have adequate communications and radio training.
- Completed the following training:
- Introduction to Fire Behavior (S-190)
- Firefighter Training (S-130) CHAPTER 7 SAFETY AND RISK MANAGEMENT 188 Release Date: January 2021
- Wildland Fire Safety Training Annual Refresher (RT-130), including fire shelter training.
- Deviation from these requirements must be approved by the IC or Burn 4 Boss.
All visitors lacking the above training and physical requirements must be escorted while on the fireline.
- Visitors must receive training in the proper use of fireline PPE.
- Requirement for hand tool and water to be determined by escort.
- Visitors must be able to walk in mountainous terrain and be in good physical condition with no known limiting conditions.
- Escorts must be minimally qualified as Single Resource Boss.
- Deviation from these requirements must be approved by the IC or Burn Boss.
Links to locations on where to find photos and video to use:
- Wildfire season and fire weather: A resource guide for reporters and media
- Modular Airborne Fire Fighting Systems (MAFFS) Air Expeditionary Group