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Aviation User and Management Training

The Forest Service utilizes aircraft in the support or accomplishment of many of our programs and projects. The aircraft users are as many and varied as the types of aircraft used. Our goal is to accomplish safe, efficient, and effective utilization of aviation resources. Increasing employee awareness of agency policy, procedures, and safe practices must receive high priority. Aviation training, whether basic safety, specialized, or management, is a method to increase this awareness and a key to meeting this goal.

2016 USFS National Aviation Safety Managemtn System Guide

5.1.1 All Forest Service employees (FSM 5720.46) share responsibility for aviation safety. Training is crucial for a strong safety culture. Employees are expected to meet training standards:

A. Fire Related Aviation Position. All employees who work with or around aircraft in fire related activities shall be qualified in accordance with the Fire and Aviation Management Qualifications Handbook FSH 5109.17 and National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) Qualifications and Certification Standards PMS 310-1

B. Non-Fire Related Aviation Position. All employees who work with or around aircraft tin non-fire related activities shall be qualified in accordance with the Interagency Aviation Training Guide. Personnel attempting to qualify for non-fire aviation positions may be credited for training that is equivalent to or exceeds the stated minimum requirements. Requests for in-lieu credit must be forwarded through the RASM to the National Aviation Safety Training Program Manager and be approved in writing prior to assignment.

Aviation safety training follows a building-block approach. Employees will receive training commensurate with their position level within the organization and impact on the safety of the organization’s operations. Personnel with aviation responsibilities must comply with policy and program guidance (FSM 5723) to ensure their training is kept current. All aviation training is documented in each employee’s training record.


Interagency Aviation Training (IAT)

The Interagency Aviation Training program, developed by the Interagency Aviation Training Steering Committee, under the National Interagency Aviation Council, is the basis for the IAT curriculum. Interagency Aviation Training meets the training requirements for aviation users as outlined in FSM 5725. Training requirements are specified in the Interagency Aviation Training Guide (FSM 5725.06). Many courses are available on-line with several more planned for the future. The IAT website is located at:

The IAT Guide is available online at:

Regional Aviation Training Sessions Many Regions are co-hosting Aviation Workshops with our Interagency partners that include the upper level (300 & 400) IAT courses. These Aviation Workshops are usually targeted at providing the required courses for positions such as: Fixed Wing Flight Manager-Special Use, Project Aviation Manager, Aviation Manager and Supervisor. Information on these training sessions can be found on the IAT web site.

Aviation Centered Education (ACE) The ACE is upper level (300 & 400) IAT courses. It centers on participants' needs to fulfill requirements in their aviation-related positions and to attend other classes that may be of interest to them. Information on scheduled ACE training sessions can be found on the IAT web site.

The curriculum suggested below is predicated on existing programs and courses offered thru the Interagency Aviation Training (IAT), the NTSB, the FAA and accredited colleges.


Employees with any association with aviation should complete the basic aviation training course A-100. For those wishing to enter the “phases” A-100 is required as well.

PHASE 1: Complete the Interagency Aviation Training (IAT) requirements for Aviation Manager.

PHASE 2: Aviation Safety Management Systems training in the following areas: Basic Aviation Accident Investigation, Human Factors, Risk Management, Aviation Safety Program Management, and Legal Aspects of Aviation. These courses, although represented in IAT would not meet the ICAP requirements. Courses must be accredited and approved by the Washington Office.

Approved pathways:
• Treasure Valley Community College:

PHASE 3: Experience, mentoring and earning an ICAP certificate

With Phase 2 completed seek out mentoring and future training and detail opportunities to help you gain the experience for eventual application to the Interagency Committee for Aviation Policy (ICAP) Federal Aviation Safety Officer (ASO) Certificate.

Detail opportunities could include but are not limited to Aviation Management jobs such as: Forest Aviation Officer, Helicopter Operations Specialist, Fixed-wing Operations Specialist, Regional Aviation Officer, Regional Aviation Safety Manager, etc.

This will gain you the experience to complement your education. Reference the following links for additional information and application for the ICAP ASO Certificate:

PHASE 4: Professional Development/Continuing Educational opportunities

With your first three phases completed, your Independent Development Plan (IDP) can reflect your interest in more in depth aviation training. Examples of this may be for instance the NTSB Aircraft Accident Investigation course or a similar course thru the FAA. Other courses are offered on-line thru colleges. A well-managed phase 4 will not only prepare you to work at a high level for the Government, but will also make you competitive in the in the ever emerging aviation private sector.

Approved Pathways:

• Southern California Safety Institute (SCSI):
• University of Southern California (USC):
• Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU):
• ERAU – Daytona Beach:
• Transportation Safety Institute (TSI):
• National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB):


The Forest Service Washington Office has established a scholarship program to promote continuing development of aviation professionals through accredited college curricula. Contact your Regional Aviation Safety Manager (RASM) or the National Aviation Training Program Manager for further information.

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