Fire Operations

The Boise Fire Department's Operations Division is staffed by approximately 250 firefighters living in 18 fire stations. The firefighters operate within a rotating three platoon system working a 48-hour tour of duty every 6 days. The city is divided into 3 battalions operating 16 engine companies, 3 truck companies (aerial apparatus) and 3 aircraft rescue and firefighting (ARFF) apparatus 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Our firefighters train for and respond to a wide variety of 911 emergencies across the region. These responses include all fires (structural, wildland, vehicle, aircraft, dumpster, etc.), motor vehicle accidents, downed powerlines, surface and sub-surface water rescues, hazardous material releases, and technical rescues (trench and structural collapses, machinery entrapments, and high-angle or confined space rescues). This all-hazards response requires extensive training, preparation, and equipment. Additionally, our strategically positioned firefighters provide a rapid response to medical emergencies where they provide both basic and advanced life support services.

Emergency Medical Services (EMS)

Beginning in 1983, all Boise firefighters assigned to Operations were licensed as Emergency Medical Technicians. In January 2006, the department began providing advanced life support service (ALS). Currently, 33 of the 250 firefighters in Operations are ALS paramedics staffing up to 8 Advanced Life Support Engine Companies per day.

firefighters carrying a gurney up a hill covered in brush

ACCESS (Ada County/City Emergency Services System)

Boise Fire Department is one of six agencies affiliated with ACCESS. Agencies are organized through a joint powers agreement that provides seamless emergency medical response irrespective of jurisdictional boundaries. Services are provided under a single unified medical license through the State of Idaho. Medical direction is provided by a medical directorate of emergency department physicians from area hospitals. ACCESS members include Ada County Paramedics, Boise Fire Department, Eagle Fire District, Kuna Fire District, Meridian Fire Department, and the Star/Middleton Fire District. ACCESS is a shining example of collaborative government operating to maximize tax dollars by leveraging local resources through collaboration. This effort minimizes resource duplication and includes a single medical supply depot for all agencies. Additionally, ACCESS ensures consistency in training, quality assurance/quality improvement, and the provision of basic and advanced emergency medical services.

Learn more about ACCESS

Trauma Intervention Program

The Boise Fire Department, along with all first responders in Ada County, partners with the Trauma Intervention Program (TIP). The Trauma Intervention Program is a volunteer based program that provides caring and compassionate aid to family members and witnesses after car crashes, fires and other traumatic events, including a sudden death.

Learn more about TIP


The Logistics Division is responsible for the management of all fire facilities and properties. These responsibilities include:

  • developing and maintaining site plans
  • preventative maintenance and sustainability programs for facilities
  • design and construction oversight for new facilities
  • renovations and repairs

Logistics maintains a fire maintenance, testing and fabrication shop that provides operational support. Logistics technicians respond to all working fires and preplanned incidents to provide additional equipment and support. They complete and/or direct all apparatus and equipment testing, repairs, preventive maintenance and records management.

The Logistics Division provides oversight of the fire supply warehouse that stocks and distributes supplies necessary for emergency response and day-to-day station life.

Other responsibilities include the infill, repair and replacement of over 6,500 fire hydrants and the production of emergency response maps. The Logistics Division coordinates with the highway departments and law enforcement for traffic management and provides planning, purchasing and oversight of the traffic signal preemption system.

Special Operations Division

The Special Operations Division of Boise Fire encompasses the dive swift water rescue, the technical rescue teams, airport rescue fire fighting at the Boise Airport and hazardous materials.

Boat in river with words "Boise Fire Dive Rescue" with three firefighters on board

Boise Fire Dive Team

The Dive Team was establish in 1982 and consists of approximately 30 members. Their mission is to respond to water related incidents within the jurisdictional boundaries and procedural operations for which it is responsible. The team is nationally certified by Dive Rescue International to perform rescue operations in the following areas: open water rescue, current water rescue, subsurface ice rescue and surface ice rescue. Operations have been performed in local rivers and canals, in water flow measuring up to 7000 cfs and in depths over 100 feet.

Aircraft rescue fire fighting engines in front of station 19

Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting

Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting (ARFF) was established in 1965 and has approximately 30 members. Their mission is to respond and operate within the Boise Airport. The ARFF team maintains certification through an annual training program required by the created by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The Boise Airport, including ARFF, is certified annually by the FAA through auditing and inspection.

Tech rescue team scaling down a cliff

Tech Rescue

The Tech Rescue Team responds and operates at the Technician level within the chapters defined by the National Fire Protection Association. The team maintains a high level of service through annual training by completing, updating and creating new and improved performance standards that meet or exceed the national standard. The State of Idaho's Bureau of Homeland Security has recognized the Technical Rescue Team as one of three regional Idaho Collapse Search and Rescue teams.

3 members of the hazardous materials team in Hazmat suits

Hazardous Materials Team

The Hazardous Materials Team responds and operates at the Technician level as defined by the National Fire Protection Association Standard 472. The team maintains its level of performance and competency through an approved and accepted annual training program that continually evaluates members' performance by means of competency based training. The HazMat Team has been recognized by the State of Idaho's Bureau of Homeland Security as one of the seven Regional Response Teams.

If you have used motor oil, latex paint, aerosol cans, garden chemicals or unused electronic equipment around the house, these items can be dropped off at a hazardous materials collection site. There are several collection sites in Boise to drop off hazardous waste, including particular fire stations in the city.

Training Division

Continuing education, physical fitness training, firefighter safety and EMT/Paramedic certification is provided to the Boise Fire Department's employees by the Training Division.

Firefighter recruits standing in front of fire department flag

Boise Fire Recruit Academy Program

The academy was created to teach new firefighters valuable skills and techniques during five months of intensive training. Skills are covered in classroom training, physical training and skill application. The recruit academy trains at the Boise Fire Training Facility.

If you are interested in becoming a Boise firefighter, learn more about our application and testing process.

Join Boise Fire

Recruit Academy members use flame retardant to stop active fire for training

Live Burn Training

The newly opened Boise Fire Training Facility, offers recruits and veteran firefighters an opportunity to do live burn training. Live burn training results in a dramatic enhancement in the state of readiness and preparedness for firefighters.

Vehicle flipped upside down with firefighters simulating an emergency save.

Vehicle Extrication Training

First responders are often called to the scene of vehicle fires and accidents that involve trapped victims. Firefighters are trained on vehicle extrication with donated cars.

If you are interested in donating an old vehicle to the Training Division, please contact us at (208) 570-6742. The owner will need to present the vehicle title.

Scenario Training

This type of training takes place at the Boise Fire Training Facility. Scenario training allows firefighters to train for specific types of events that they may respond to out in the field. Examples include: high rise fires, business fires and home fires.

If you are interested in donating a structure to Boise Fire, please contact us at 208-570-6742.

Learn more

Wildfire Division

Boise Fire Department’s Wildfire Division works to respond to and manage large scale wildfires. Created in June 2018, the division collaborates with internal and external partners to integrate wildfire mitigation programs, Fire Adapted Community priorities and a management strategy for the City of Boise.

Looking out over spread of grasslands and foothills with fire burning in the distance
Bogus Basin Fire

The Boise Fire Department is committed to the goals of the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy, to provide effective firefighter response, create fire adapted communities and to help create more resilient landscapes.

The following priorities have been identified to help maintain a relevant and integrated, highly-trained Wildfire Division:

  • In-District Response
  • Wildfire Training
  • Wildfire Assignments
  • Wildfire Mitigation
  • Wildfire Prevention
  • Collaboration and Networking

Learn more about the Ada Fire Adapted Community

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