Programs & Services

Apply to be a Wildland Firefighter

Apply to be a Wildland Firefighter

The Forestry Division may hire emergency wildland firefighters at times that are administratively determined (known as “ADs”) to manage sudden and unexpected wildfires, or when wildland fire potential is high, or for prescribed fire or fire rehabilitation activities. Such hiring is on an emergency and temporary basis, is of an uncertain nature, and is temporary in duration. A physical fitness test (known as a “pack test”) is required for most AD fire positions. ADs shall be a minimum of 18 years of age and in good physical health for fire line positions.

Fighting wildland fires is dynamic, strenuous, and physically demanding work that is performed under stressful situations and conditions. Workdays are typically 12 hours or more and may be continuous for up to or exceeding 14 days with potential exposure to extreme environmental conditions. Wildland firefighting is both challenging and deeply rewarding and AD’s may be sent throughout New Mexico and across the county to assist with wildland fire emergencies. Individuals who become AD firefighters will gain vital technical skills for managing wildland fire.

Recruitment

Forestry Division district offices advertise and recruit emergency wildland firefighters/ADs through district offices and the local Department of Workforce Solutions offices. The Forestry Division also hires ADs for two Type II Initial Attack crews through the Returning Heroes Program (RHP). Contact your local Forestry Division district or the RHP office for more information on training availability and schedules.

Hiring

At the beginning of each season (typically February – March), districts and the RHP staff review the applications received and select applicants who will staff each district’s engines, the district’s dispatch office, and the RHP Type II Initial Attack crews based on specific hiring criteria. Such hiring is on an emergency and temporary basis, is of an uncertain nature, and is temporary in duration. Information on hiring criteria can be obtained from your local Forestry Division district or the RHP office.

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To contact your local Forestry district or the Returning Heroes Program for more information