National Wildfire Coordinating Group

Public Information Officer, Technician

PIOT decorative banner: photos depicting PIOT position.

PIOT Homepage Button Position Incident Position Description Button Position Reference Materials Button Position Qualification Requirements Button

The Public Information Officer, Technician (PIOT) participates in the collection and dissemination of incident information and may be the first public point of contact. The PIOT may be assigned to information center operations, community engagement, media relations, or other branches. On a Type 1, 2, or 3 incident, the PIOT reports to the lead Public Information Officer (PIO) as part of the Command Staff. On a Type 4 or 5 incident, the PIOT may work for the public affairs office, Agency Administrator (AA), or Incident Commander (IC). The PIOT works in the Command functional area.

The Forest Service and Department of Interior are enabled by Administratively Determined Pay Plans (AD Pay Plans) to hire persons for temporary duration for the following reasons:

  1. To cope with a sudden and unexpected emergency caused by a fire, or extreme fire potential, flood, storm, or any other all-hazard emergency that threatens damage to federally protected property, has the potential to cause loss of life, serious injury, public health risk, or damage to natural or cultural resources unless brought under immediate control.
  2. To provide emergency assistance to States under formalized agreements.
  3. To meet mission assignments issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

The National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) Incident Business Committee (IBC) reviews positions annually and establishes pay rate classifications for each position.

For more information on the AD Pay Plans, go to

Jan 2023

Added: Public Information Officer Type 3 (PIO3) to "These Positions Maintain Currency For PIOT."

Mar 2022

Added: IS-700, NIMS: An Introduction added to Required Training.

Dec 2021

Added: Incident Position Description (IPD) approved.

Oct 2021

Position created.

  • There is no position task book and no requirement for incident experience. Agency certification can be accomplished once training is complete.
  • All current qualified Public Information Officers (PIOF) can be qualified as PIOT.
  • All PIOF trainees will be qualified as a PIOT if they have taken the required PIOT courses.
    • S-110 would not be required for qualified or trainee PIOFs once they have taken S-130.
  • Read the complete 2021 PIO Transition Plan.


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