National Wildfire Coordinating Group

Unmanned Aircraft System, Manager

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The Unmanned Aircraft Systems, Manager is the conduit between an Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) vendor (under federal contract/agreement) and an Incident Management Team (IMT). The UASM coordinates UAS vendor missions with operations, air operations, and planning personnel and is the designated government representative for the UAS contract/agreement. The UASM works with the CO/Contracting Officer Representative (COR) to maintain contractual compliance. The UASM supervises the UAS vendor flight crew and Unmanned Aircraft System, Data Specialist, (UASD). The UASM is supervised by the Air Operations Branch Director (AOBD) or designee and works in the Air Operations functional area.

All UAS missions shall be conducted in accordance with the NWCG Standards for Fire Unmanned Aircraft Systems Operations, PMS 515, and applicable federal/state policies [(e.g., Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Interior (DOI), United States Forest Service (USFS), etc.)].

Unmanned Aircraft System, Pilot (UASP) Unmanned Aircraft System, Manager (UASM) Unmanned Aircraft System, Data Specialist (UASD) Unmanned Aircraft System, Module Leader (UASL)

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

Apr 2021

Added: Incident Position Description (IPD) approved.

Nov 2018

Position created.


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