S-270, Basic Air Operations

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Course Description

This course covers aircraft types and capabilities, aviation management and safety for flying in and working with agency aircraft, tactical and logistical uses of aircraft, and requirements for helicopter take-off and landing areas. Note: The regulations, procedures and policies addressed in this course are primarily those governing federal agency and ICS operations. State, county, or other political subdivisions using this course will need to consult their agency having jurisdiction with respect to regulations, procedures and policies.

Course Objective:

  • Upon completion of this course, the student will have obtained the basic understanding of the different functions of Air Operations.

Course Delivery

Information not available at this time.

Course Components

Course ComponentCourse Time
Pre-course workN/A
Pre-selection assessment1
Online trainingN/A
Instructor-led training16
Total Hours17

Course Session Offerings

Nationally advertised course sessions can be found by searching for S-270 on the National Wildland Fire Training website. Contact your local Training Officer or Geographic Area Training Representative for more information about local course sessions.

Course Required For:

Single Engine Airtanker Manager (SEMG).

Course Recommended For:

Personnel desiring to be qualified as Single Engine Airtanker Manager (SEMG), Helicopter Manager, single resource (HMGB), Aircraft dispatcher (ACDP), and other positions that require basic knowledge of aviation operations.

Prerequisite Qualifications and Training

Satisfactory completion of pre-course work.

Associated Position Task Books

Information not available at this time.

S-270 Course

S-270 is available in the following format:

  • From FMCG

S-270 Course Materials

Introduction - Get this information from the electronic library if you can - I just edited the titles

  1. Introduce instructors and students.
  2. Discuss course logistics.
  3. Present course overview.
  4. Explain student evaluation methods.
  5. Discuss students' expectations for the course.
  6. Review pre-course work.

Unit 1: Aircraft Types and Capabilities


  1. Define the ultimate goal of a water delivery system.
  2. List two reasons why portable water delivery systems are important for wildland firefighting and prescribed burning.
  3. Identify key factors to consider when designing, setting up, and operating a portable water delivery system.

Link to Unit 1 Module

Unit 2: Aviation Management and Safety


  1. Distinguish the differences between the two cycle and four cycle engines and identify which one of these differences is most important to a pump operator.
  2. Label the parts of a commonly used portable pump.
  3. Identify the purpose of a suction hose and a discharge hose.
  4. Match types of wildland fire appliances and tools with their respective purpose.
  5. Identify nozzle types.
  6. List one type of national portable pump kit.

Unit 3: Aircraft Missions


  1. Given scenarios and photos, identify risk management, fuel handing, and environmental concerns.
  2. Identify methods to prevent cavitation and water hammer.
  3. List the four components that should be included in the design of a portable water delivery system.
  4. Given photos, critique a portable pump setup.
  5. Identify how to prevent the engine from flooding when starting the pump.
  6. Identify how to troubleshoot common problems with portable pumps.
  7. Identify how to select nozzles and apply water to achieve tactical objectives.
  8. List general guidelines for maintaining and retrieving hoses.

Unit 4: Helicopter Operations


  1. List one reason it is important for a pump and nozzle operator to have a basic understanding of hydraulics.
  2. Given scenarios, determine flow and pump discharge pressure, and select appropriate pump(s).
  3. Given scenarios, draw a schematic of the design of a water delivery system, and troubleshoot the delivery system.
  4. Given scenarios, determine whether parallel hose lay, series pumping, or parallel pumping would be the best option.



Functional Area: 
Air Operations
Page Last Modified / Reviewed: 

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