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Publication Information

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Title: A comparison of the costs of forest service and contract fire crews in the Pacific Northwest.

Author: Donovan, Geoffrey H.

Date: 2005

Source: Western Journal of Applied Science 20(4):233-239

Publication Series: Not categorized

Description: Rising wildfire suppression expenditures on public land in the United States have led to increased scrutiny of wildfire management practices. One area that has received particular attention is the Forest Service's increasing reliance on contract fire crews. Because a contract crew rate includes several costs that are not included in the wage costs of a Forest Service crew, it is difficult to determine if this increasing reliance on contract fire crews increases or decreases wildfire suppression costs. The full cost of 33 Forest Service type II fire crews dispatched during the 2003 fire season from five national forests in Oregon and Washington are estimated and compared with the cost of contract crews dispatched in the same region. Results suggest that if sufficient work is available to keep a Forest Service crew productively employed throughout a fire season, then the daily cost of a Forest Service type II crew is lower than the daily cost of a contract crew.

Keywords: Type II fire crew, wildfire suppression, Oregon, Washington, Region 6, Forest Service, contract fire crews

Publication Notes:

  • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

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Citation:


Donovan, Geoffrey H. 2005. A comparison of the costs of forest service and contract fire crews in the Pacific Northwest. Western Journal of Applied Science 20(4):233-239

 


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