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T&D > Programs Areas > Fire > Fireline Production Rates Program Areas
Fireline Production Rates

Line Production Rates
Fuel Model Description
Data Collection Summary

Project Leader: George Broyles
Proposer: John Fehr, SDTDC
Completion Dates:
      Data Collection: On-Going *
      Data Analysis: On-Going
      Estimated Project Completion: September 2010
      * Note on completion dates: This project is dependent on the fire season, fire on a specific fuel
        model and availability of crews. The estimated completion dates are based on previous years

Deliverables: New fireline production rate tables for the 310 -1. New tables will include values for IHC, Type II and Type II IA crews for all 13 fuel models. Values will have a 95% confidence level.

Project Description:

Production rate pic
Collecting Data from the field.
Existing fireline construction production rates for dozers and crews have not been updated in many years. New equipment, training techniques and operational requirements have been introduce since then that may have a significant effect of the production rates.

Production rate data will be collected during fire suppression activities on fires that represent all fuel models across the United States. Handcrews are observed throughout an entire operational period and data is collected on all activities the crews are engaged in during their shift. There are numerous variables (fuel type, terrain, crew complement) that change during the course of one operational period. To accurately account for this variables, the crews have to be "shadowed" by a T&D technician.

Project Activity Summary:

During the summer of 2005, we began the field testing phase of the project. Equipment, procedures and the data collection matrix were tested. Dispatch protocols and communication protocols with IMT’s and crews were established. In 2007, we were able to hire two FS employees on a 120 day detail to be available to collect production rate data. In 2007 data was collected between June 4 and October 31.

The data is analyzed by a statistician at the FS PSW Research Station. Additional analysis and support is provided by the FS Riverside Fire Lab. We will continue to collect data so as to obtain enough information to provide statistically sound values for all crew types and fuel models.

google earth images
Data representation using Google Earth.

Major project costs continue to be air transportation and rental vehicles. Due to the challenge of locating crews constructing handline, especially in grass fuel models there were numerous occasions where SDTDC observers arrived at fires and crews were no longer constructing line.

We continue to receive excellent support from the regional GACC’s, dispatch centers and the Incident Management Teams we have worked with. Each crew that has been observed is briefed on the project and the process we employ to gather data. Every crew has cooperated fully with our work. Without this cooperation and support the success of this project would not be possible.

For more information on this project, contact George Broyles ( at (909) 599-1267 ext. 277 or Ralph Gonzales ( at 909-599-1267 ext. 212.