2019 National Wildland Fire Air to Ground List

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Paysonscanner

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OK, sometimes I have trouble posting attachments that I have developed. I just got access to the 2019 "National Interagency Aviation Frequency Guide" published by NIFC. It is quite voluminous and sometimes hard to decipher. I've updated a spreadsheet my late Hubby developed back about 2016, but kept for his own use only. I'm trying to get the 2020 version, but so far no luck. There have been many changes since my late Hubby updated the spreadsheet back in 2017. I hope sharing this is helpful. If anyone finds that some information needs updated, based on scanning in their local area, or finds a typo, I appreciate feedback. Now, I hope the thing posts OK. Mostly, I hope this is useful for some.

I'm having some trouble, I will keep trying.
 

Paysonscanner

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Sorry, I've been editing for several days and I'm tired. I hope to pick this up in the next few days and figure out how to attach it.
 

tyytor

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Sorry, I've been editing for several days and I'm tired. I hope to pick this up in the next few days and figure out how to attach it.
Hi I hope that you can post this it is great information, my be it can be zipped and uploaded?
Thanks
 

Paysonscanner

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Thanks to N1GAW for the reference in Chapter 15. I've read it before, but it's been a few years. I've read about the "National Interagency Air Tactics Frequencies" in several places in the past few years. But this chapter is the definitive reference for them, which gives them an official name. I'm going to revise the list I've posted here to include them. They are: 166.6125, 168.4000, 167.9500, 169.1500 and 169.2000 and are clear for use west of the 95th meridian only.

I remember years back when there were 5 air to air tactics FM frequencies. Every fire was assigned one of these 5. Somewhere, deep in some files I probably have that list of 5. 169.1500 and 169.2000 were on the older list, which I think I first saw in the early 1980's. 167.9500 used to be listed as "BLM Air Net" about that time also. 168.4000 also came from the BLM. I don't remember what happened to the 1st 3 of the older list.

I think this new set is reserved for extended attack incidents when all the pre-approved AM air to air tactics have been used on other incidents and getting more from the FAA is delayed. They can also be used when getting approval for unique air to ground frequencies from the unused federal pool is delayed. NIFC's communications unit (CDO must stand for Communications Duty Officer) has control of all frequencies used for both initial and extended attack aviation frequencies as well as the NIFC command and tacs. Some of this is delegated to the Geographical Area Coordination Centers. Local dispatch centers don't have authority to just pick up and use whatever they want.
 

RaleighGuy

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Initial attack frequency zones are used by pilots and dispatchers for purposes of response to incidents such as wildland fires. Initial attack frequency zones are agreed upon annually by the Communications Duty Officer at the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC), other frequency managers, and the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration), and can't be changed during the year without required approval from the CDO at NIFC.

 

Paysonscanner

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Paysonscanner, so sorry to hear about your late husband but he did develop a nice document. And thanks to you for your willingness to share the document with us. Take care. Dave
Thank you for your kind words. Nothing in life can replace him. He was a handsome radio and engineer nerd, but also a very social person, so nerd doesn't really fit. He was also a volunteer firefighter and developed sources for information that way. He had everything organized into both paper and computer files, much of which he printed and organized into notebooks. He also took copious notes, with dates and names of people. He went on some large California fires when Type 1 engine strike teams were needed for structural protection. He had a lot of time to hang out in fire camps. He would walk around asking everyone questions with his pocket notebook in hand. Our small fire department's computer had access to all sorts of otherwise protected information that needed a password to get access to. He didn't always share what he found, thinking it too sensitive. The fire event of his life was on a Type 1 engine at the "Rim Fire." in 2013 where he probably saw more fire action in a couple of weeks than during the rest of his life. I think, in terms of acres, this was California's largest fire at the time. Some others since have been larger.
 

Paysonscanner

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Initial attack frequency zones are used by pilots and dispatchers for purposes of response to incidents such as wildland fires. Initial attack frequency zones are agreed upon annually by the Communications Duty Officer at the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC), other frequency managers, and the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration), and can't be changed during the year without required approval from the CDO at NIFC.

Wow, another great, helpful reference! When late Hubby first developed the spreadsheet he listed the initial attack zones, such as OR-3 and WY-06, but he didn't have a map to go with it. When we traveled he had to have the GACC air to ground map with the spreadsheet. So he went back and found the dispatch centers that had control over each zone and typed those into the zone. Some zones, especially in California, have more than one dispatch center. Just a dispatch centers have more than one zone, both Cody and Casper, Wyoming come to mind. I'm hoping the description of the zones and dispatch centers makes sense. Last I hear there were 105 Initial Attack Zones in the U.S. However, Hubby counted all the federal dispatch centers (natural resource agencies) and came up with a number of about 145. The National Park Service often has dispatch centers for parks that are not interagency as these are also Public Service Answering Points, or PSAP's. They receive all 911 calls in their dispatch areas because they have exclusive federal jurisdiction, similar to most large military bases.

I'm hoping people will be able to follow the listing of dispatch centers, rather than having the zones listed. I'm thinking I may post the latest GACC aviation frequency maps here at some point. They are hard to read when posted as a single page or printed into a notebook, but might have enough resolution to be upsized on a computer. I don't have current maps for every GACC so maybe posting them will just lead to confusion.
 

RaleighGuy

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@Paysonscanner perhaps to make it easier (and provide better quality) you can create a shared Dropbox or Google Drive shared folder and save all the information in one place, making it easier for people to find and providing better quality. This also is easier for you to update and ensure the most correct information is being used.
 

Paysonscanner

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@Paysonscanner perhaps to make it easier (and provide better quality) you can create a shared Dropbox or Google Drive shared folder and save all the information in one place, making it easier for people to find and providing better quality. This also is easier for you to update and ensure the most correct information is being used.
Sounds like that would take a bigger computer brain than this girl has! It took me a long time to just post the attachment here. Good idea, but I don't like computers to suck my time from other activities like hiking, cycling, cooking, sewing, woodworking . . . . .
 

Paysonscanner

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Late Hubby built the spreadsheet to follow the format from the "National Interagency Aviation Frequency Guide." that lists each initial attack zone and the 2-4 air to ground freqs for each zone. He didn't care for just putting down the zone, example "WY 01" after trying to use it that way on the first trip after he printed the spreadsheet for his traveling notebooks. So he looked up all the dispatch centers listed in the guide and described the zones with those. He sent the spreadsheet to a circle of amateur radio, firefighter and radio tech friends for their use. He often got information from them so this was a way to return the favor. He wanted the freqs on one piece of double sided paper, rather than carrying the national guide that is 98 pages (49 double sided) pages long. This was about about 2012-2016 or thereabouts. I guess a copy made its way to the wiki somehow. Hubby had quit RR around 2010, I think before he got hold of the national guide. The national guide has every dispatch center listed with notes about the location of Air Guard, National Flight Following and some local flight following remote base stations with lat-long of each. It also has a 6 page table of the AG freqs as assigned by zone, also in freq and channel order. This is why it's so thick.

The RR wiki is a bunch of hieroglyphs to me as far as writing something on it. I stay away from it as the time taken to learn it and the time trying to figure out where all the information is would have to be taken from the other things I enjoy doing. I remember in the 1980's and early 1990's using DOS computers at the hospital. We had a need for a lot of signs-posters to replace the handwritten ones we had up. They gave us this program that was incredibly complex where it seemed like we had to write computer code to make a sign with 6-8 large words. It seems like the Wiki is similar, why can't this site use something that is more like Word, where the screen for editing looks just like the finished product? I got the 2019 guide from a California contact who I met last summer, who picked it up from a contact of his.
 
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