The Bureau of Land Management-Alaska Fire Service (BLM-AFS), is recruiting interested individuals for participation in the North Star Fire Crew Program for the upcoming fire season which runs from mid-May through mid-August.
The North Star Fire Crew is designed to achieve the following goals: provide entry level positions into the Alaska Fire Service for individuals with limited or no fire experience, provide an experienced pool of potential recruits for the Hotshot crews, provide AFS with an additional quick response hand crew, and provide Alaska natural resource agencies a low cost, labor intensive crew for project work.
Crew members will be trained and utilized as wildland firefighters. While on fires, crew members will be paid AD-C Emergency Firefighter wages (approximately $21.00 per hour). During a normal fire season, crew members may be on fires an average of four weeks or more. However, the amount of paid/fire time is not guaranteed.
When not on fires, project work will be performed on a volunteer/non-paid basis.
Project work will consist of a variety of conservation and resource enhancement projects such as trail construction and rehabilitation, pre-commercial thinning, slash disposal, and building maintenance or construction.
While on project work or on fire assignment, work hours may be up to 16 hours per day, 7 days a week. A full season on The North Star Fire Crew will count as experience towards qualifying as a regular seasonal employee of AFS or other agencies.
Crew members should be in top physical condition. Work will be of a hard, physical nature. Most work will be outdoors in conditions of heat, cold, wet, wind, dust and smoke; possibly for weeks at a time.
On the first day of training The North Star Fire Crew candidates will take the P.T. test. The following is the North Star P.T. test with the minimum goals required to be considered for the Hot Shot crews:
1) 1.5 MILE RUN IN LESS THAN 10:30 (TARGET GOAL)
2) MINIMUM 7 PULL-UPS (TARGET GOAL)
3) 40 SIT-UPS IN 60 SECONDS (TARGET GOAL)
4) 40 PUSH-UPS IN 60 SECONDS (TARGET GOAL)
5) PACK TEST- 45LB PACK FOR 3 MILES IN LESS THAN 45 MINUTES (REQUIRED FOR HIRE ON NORTH STAR FIRE CREW)
Crew members are required to participate in a daily physical training program when not on fires. The following is a sample daily P.T. schedule:
1) 5 MINUTES OF FREE STRETCHING
2) 3 SETS OF 50 PUSH-UPS
3) 3 SETS OF 30 FLUTTER KICKS
4) 3 SETS OF 7 PULL-UPS OR 1-6 PYRAMID PULL-UPS
5) 3 SETS OF 7 BAR-DIPS OR 1-6 PYRAMID BAR-DIPS
6) 2 SETS OF 100 SIT-UPS
7) 3 SETS OF DOLLIES
8) 100 ABDOMINAL CRUNCHES OR BICYCLES
9) 3.0-7.0 MILE RUN (7-8 MINUTE/MILE PACE) OR 1 HOUR LONG HIKE (MINIMUM 15 MINUTE/MILE PACE)
Housing and meals will be provided at no cost to crew members from commencement until the crew is disbanded. While in Fairbanks, housing will be in barracks rooms and meals will be in the BLM Dining Hall. While in the field, housing may consist of a tent and meals may be field rations. Crew members can expect to be living under primitive field conditions for weeks at time.
Transportation from home to Fairbanks and return to home must be provided by crew members. Transportation from Fairbanks to work sites and return to Fairbanks will be provided by the agency.
The crew will consist of 16 crew members under the supervision of one crew boss, two squad bosses, and one saw boss. The supervisors will be regular AFS employees with experience in firefighting and crew supervision.
Crew members must be able to work the entire season (mid-May through mid-August) and will be expected to be ready and available for fire calls 24 hrs/day, 7 days/week.
An initial training session will commence a week prior to Memorial Day each season at the AFS facilities on Fort Wainwright. A pool of candidates (25 in number) will be instructed in basic fire fighting skills and techniques; use and maintenance of chain saws, hand tools, and portable pumps; basic air operations; and safety. Upon completion of the initial training a performance based selection will identify 16 regular crew members; the remaining candidates will be utilized as alternates to facilitate crew needs.
All firefighting gear and equipment will be provided.
Crew members will be expected to provide their own personal clothing. The minimum clothing items required are listed below:
· 8 inch top, lace-up, all-leather boots with Vibram soles (no nylon/ Gore-tex uppers or steel toes)
· Rain gear
· Warm jacket or sweatshirt
· Space blanket
· Extra socks (4-6 pr. cotton or wool work socks)
· Extra underwear
· Running shoes
· Physical training clothing
Applicants will be selected on the basis of those who best meet the objectives and needs of the North Star Fire Crew and of the BLM Volunteer Program. Previous fire experience is not required to be considered for the North Star Fire Crew.
Who may apply? Any person, 18 years of age or older by commencement.
When to apply? Applications must be postmarked no later than April 1 each season.
How to apply? Applications may be printed out and sent to the address below (click on the link below to display/print the application).
BLM-Alaska Fire Service
Alaska Hotshots-North Stars
PO Box 35005
Ft. wainwright, AK 99703-0005