Wildfire Defense Systems

Wildfire Defense Systems (WDS) is a national leader in insurer wildfire services, combining professional wildfire consulting with federally-certified emergency response wildfire suppression services.​

Founded in 2001 for U.S. Forest Service initial attack, suppression and mop-up services, the company added professional services support in 2005, and in 2008 initiated its insurer services programs for comprehensive wildfire loss prevention.

WDStraining Information

NWCG Training

WDSed offers a wide range of NWCG-certified wildland training courses, from Basic Firefighter to Crew Boss/Engine Boss, including the Fireline Safety Refresher course. Classes take 1-5 days, depending on the certification level sought, and are conducted at our training facility in Bozeman, MT.

Course Cancellation Policy

Payment is expected at the time of application, unless arrangements are made to invoice agency or fire department. Companies/Agencies are allowed to transfer enrollment to another student one time. A fee of $75 is charged for cancelling a class registration entirely at least one month prior to class dates. Later than one month no refund will be issued.

Experience and Professionalism

The on-staff instructors at Wildfire Defense Systems are specialists in Insurance Resources response, providing leadership and oversight to the largest private fleet of wildfire response engines in the nation. Their Wildland Urban Interface experience is diversified as all cadre have been members of Fire Departments and US Agencies. They bring over 140 years combined experience to the classes, ensuring participants will gain valuable real-world insight from hotshots, engine bosses, and incident commanders.

Course Dates

Basic Firefighter (S-110, L-180, S-130, S-190): April 23-27

Crew Boss/Engine Boss (S-230-231): April 9-11

Intermediate Fire Behavior (S-290): April 2-5

Fireline Safety Refresher (RT-130) and Work Capacity

Test (WCT): April 19, 2018 or May 10

*All courses will be held in Bozeman, Montana.

Course Description

5 Days

This course is designed to train entry-level firefighters for the Firefighter Type 2 (FFT2) level. Course includes S-110 - Basic Wildland Fire Orientation, L-180 - Human Factors in the Wildland Fire Service, S-130 – Firefighter Training, S-190 – Introduction to Wildland Fire Behavior, and will include the Work Capacity Test (WCT) for those who have no limiting factors on the Health Screening Questionnaire (HSQ) or have received clearance to participate.

Provides information on personal preparedness and responsibility, mobilization, incident procedures, proper clothing and equipment, and living conditions in wildland fire camps. ​
- Topics include situational awareness, basic communication responsibilities, attitude and stress barriers, decision making process, and teamwork principles.
- Explain what the LCES (Lookouts, Communications, Escape Routes, and Safety Zones) system is and how it relates to the Standard Firefighting Orders. Construct fireline to required standards using various methods. Strengthen, reinforce, and use holding actions on a fireline. Extinguish the fire with or without the use of water. Complete assigned tasks in a safe and efficient manner. Given an assignment in a wildfire environment, describe factors in that environment which could impact safety.
- Provides instruction in the primary factors affecting the start and spread of wildfire and recognition of potentially hazardous situations.
2 Days

Identify position responsibilities and demonstrate the ability to apply principles of Operational Leadership found in the Incident Response Pocket Guide (IRPG; PMS 461). Describe how to incorporate and maintain open lines of communication with appropriate personnel, and identify documentation responsibilities. Identify Look Up, Down and Around indicators and demonstrate the ability to apply the components of Lookouts, Communications, Escape Routes, and Safety Zones (LCES) as described in the IRPG. Demonstrate the ability to apply tactical decision making procedures.

5 Days

S-230 - This is a classroom course designed to produce student proficiency in the performance of duties associated with the single resource boss position from initial dispatch through demobilization to the home unit. Topics include operational leadership, preparation and mobilization, assignment preparation, risk management, entrapment avoidance, safety and tactics, offline duties, demobilization, and post incident responsibilities. Prerequisites: Qualified as firefighter type 1 (FFT1), successful completion of Intermediate Wildland Fire Behavior (S-290), satisfactory completion of pre-work

S-231 - This is a skill course designed to produce student proficiency in the performance of the duties associated with engine boss, single resource (ENGB). Topics include engine and crew capabilities and limitations, information sources, fire sizeup considerations, tactics, and wildland/ urban interface. Prerequisites: Successful completion of Crew Boss, Single Resource (S-230).

4 Days

This is a classroom-based skills course designed to prepare the prospective fireline supervisor to undertake safe and effective fire management operations. It is the second course in a series that collectively serves to develop fire behavior prediction knowledge and skills. Fire environment differences are discussed as necessary; instructor should stress local conditions. Prerequisites: Successful completion of Introduction to Wildland Fire Behavior (S-190). Satisfactory completion of pre-selection assessment and pre-course work.

Fireline Safety Refresher (RT-130) with WCT Session 1
6-8 Hours

Yearly requirements for Red Card currency.

team member

Brett Beagley

Senior Fire Officer Assistant Lead Instructor & Course Coordinator

Brett brings 24 years of wildland fire experience to the WDS table, and the classroom. He is a former Fuels Specialist, AFMO, Engine Boss, Hotshot, and a firefighter with the US Forest Service. He is red carded as FFT2, FFT1, ENGB, CRWB, STCR, TFLD, DIVS, ICT4, ICT3, and RXB2. He completed the Facilitative Instructor course in 2005

team member

Eric Morris

Senior Manager, Field Services Senior Fire Officer Lead Instructor

Eric is WDS’ Senior Fire Officer and oversees our field/fire resources. Eric has 25 years of wildland fire experience and is a former Station Foreman of a multiagency fire station with state, county, and federal resources. He is currently qualified as an ICT3, Task Force Leader, Strike Team Leader, Engine Boss, Crew Boss, and Prescribed Fire Burn Boss.

team member

Steve Gilson

Engine Boss​

Firefighter - 10 Years

Engine Boss - 4 Years

Instructor - 5 Years

team member


Field Training and Compliance Officer

Firefighter - 20 Years

Engine Boss - 11 Years

Instructor - 13 Years

team member

Ross Filmore

Engine Boss​

Firefighter - 20 Years

Engine Boss - 14 Years

Instructor - 3 Seasons

team member

Brad Hillous

Engine Boss​

Firefighter - 13 Years

Engine Boss - 10 Years

Instructor - 4 Years

team member

Mike Wentink

Engine Boss​

Firefighter - 10 Years

Engine Boss - 1 Years

Crew Boss - 11 Years

Instructor - 3 Years

team member

David Clark

Engine Boss​

Firefighter - 14 Years

Engine Boss - 7 Years

Instructor - Over 60 Courses


Contact Brett or Eric at WDStraining@wildfire-defense.com
or 406-586-5400 ext. 8701