National Wildfire Coordinating Group

RT-130, Wildland Fire Safety Training Annual Refresher (WFSTAR)

Point Fire Immersive

RT-130 Decorative banner. Group of photos depicting wildland firefighters performing various duties.

Explore the Point Fire module for a unique perspective of the 1995 Point Fire, located near Kuna, Idaho. Immerse yourself in expert interviews supplemented by aerial footage and 360-degree video for an experience second only to physically attending the Point Fire staff ride.
Category: Case Studies
Core Component(s): Incident Reviews and Lessons Learned;
Fire and Aviation Operational Safety;
Human Factors, Communication and Decision Making

Estimated Delivery Time: 30 minutes per stand; Video Length: n/a



Explore the Point Fire module for a unique perspective of the 1995 Point Fire, located near Kuna, Idaho. Immerse yourself in expert interviews supplemented by aerial footage and 360-degree video for an experience second only to physically attending the Point Fire staff ride.

Facilitator Preparation

  • Review the Intent, Site Navigation, and Background Information sections.
  • Consider delivering one stand each day as part of a morning briefing.
  • Consider additional activities and discussion questions pertinent to your location and agency.

Facilitating the Discussion

  • Show the videos.
  • Facilitate a small or large group discussion using discussion questions and points posed in the videos.

Discussion Questions

  1. Stand 1 – Discussion Questions
    • At the time of the Point Fire, coordination between agency resources and cooperators during wildfire response was inconsistent.
      • How has the relationship between agency resources and cooperators evolved since this incident?
      • What actions do you take to enhance cooperation and coordination with your adjacent resources? Where can you improve?
    • The Point Fire was initially contained at 120 acres but blew up during mop up operations when a cold front passed over the area.
      • How do you maintain and communicate situational awareness through all stages of fire suppression efforts?
      • How do you combat complacency during mop up operations?
  2. Stand 2 – Discussion Questions
    • The wildland fire environment is dynamic and unforgiving. Often, we are inundated by time constraints and unanticipated factors requiring immediate action.
      • How do you recognize the need to take a tactical pause when you find yourself challenged by compounding factors?
      • How do you regain your situational awareness and re-engage?
    • Communication is a two-way dialogue between sender and receiver. The Red Flag Warning was not heard or acknowledged by all resources on scene.
      • How can you ensure your crew members communicate critical information or listen to and acknowledge the message?
      • As a leader on the fireline, how do you ensure all resources on your division or incident listen to and acknowledge critical information?
  3. Stand 3 – Discussion Questions
    • Fire suppression knowledge and skills are learned through experience.
      • How can less experienced crew members be given learning opportunities where they can be safe and successful?
      • How can more experienced firefighters provide practical mentorship to newer crew members throughout the fire season?
    • Subject matter expert interviews note that even as second-year firefighters, they recognized key weather observations and understood potential fire behavior impact.
      • Identify specific weather indicators every firefighter must monitor using the Look Up, Down and Around reference in your Incident Response Pocket Guide (IRPG), PMS 461.
      • Discuss three additional indicators which will help you maintain awareness of fire environment factors Using the Look Up, Down and Around.
  4. Stand 4 – Discussion Questions
    • The culture of wildland firefighting includes stigmas that may impact individual decision-making. Examples include taking undue risks to protect equipment for fear of reprimand or hesitation to deploy a shelter due to pursuant investigations.
      • Describe additional examples that you have encountered.
      • How can we promote growth and foster acceptance rather than advance stigmas?
    • Firefighters may experience long term fatigue differently throughout the fire season. Individuals may experience physical, mental, and emotional responses.
      • What can you do to be prepared for the next shift, individually and as a crew?
      • How can you maintain morale, physical and mental health, and personal relationships, etc.?
  5. Stand 5 – Discussion Questions
    • Current firefighting culture promotes empowering employees with the concept of "see it, say it" regarding hazards.
      • How do you ensure all crew members are able to speak up?
      • How can you respectfully call out hazards as a new crew member?
      • How can you, as a leader, respectfully respond to crew members speaking up?
  6. Lessons Learned – Discussion Questions
    • The many lessons learned from the Point Fire came at the cost of human life.
      • What was your biggest take-away from the Point Fire module?
  • What is one practical change you will implement starting now based on this training?


Additional Viewing Information

This module must be viewed online on the ESRI StoryMaps platform. Downloading is not an option.


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