Operational Briefings

Fire Communication
Page Last Modified / Reviewed: 
Jun 2020


Operational briefings are critical to safe fire operations. To ensure a consistent and effective briefing, a standardized briefing checklist should always be used. The following checklist is printed on the inside back cover of the Incident Response Pocket Guide, PMS 461:


  • Fire name, location, map orientation, and other incidents in the area.
  • Terrain influences.
  • Fuel type and conditions.
  • Fire weather (previous, current, and expected).
  • Fire behavior (previous, current, and expected).  


  • Command (Incident Commander/immediate supervisor).
  • Leader’s intent.
  • Specific tactical assignments.
  • Contingency plans.  


  • Communication Plan (tactical, command, air/ground frequencies, cell phone numbers, etc.).
  • Medevac Plan.  


  • Other resources that may be working adjacent to you and those available to order.
  • Aviation operations.
  • Logistics (e.g., transportation, supplies, equipment).  

Risk Management:

  • Identify known hazards and risks.
  • Identify control measures to eliminate hazards and reduce risk.
  • Identify trigger points for disengagement or reevaluation of operational plan.


Additional Resources

Incident Management Situation Report (IMSR)
Incident Response Pocket Guide (IRPG), PMS 461
NWCG Standards for Helicopter Operations, PMS 510
RT-130, Wildland Fire Safety Training Annual Refresher (WFSTAR)
Interagency Standards for Fire and Fire Aviation Operations (Red Book)
Wildland Fire Lessons Learned Center

Have an idea? Have feedback? Share it.

EMAIL | Facebook | URL: https://www.nwcg.gov/committees/6-Minutes-for-safety
MAIL: 6 Minutes for Safety Subcommittee • 3833 S. Development Ave • Boise, ID 83705 | FAX: 208-387-5378