Expert Advice

5 Ways to Prepare for the Fire Season with the Forest Service

Not long ago, the U.S. Forest Service considered the fire season to be primarily a summer problem for the Western states, but the recent string of deadly wildfires has brought heightened attention to what now appears to be a year-round need.   The following are a few things you should know and steps you should take as a potential vendor.


1. The Forest Service will solicit the following in response to wildland firefighting in 2019

  • Clerical Support Unit
  • Communication Unit
  • GIS Unit
  • Helicopter Operations Support Unit
  • Refrigerated Trailer
  • Heavy Equipment with Water (Pumper Cat, Skidgine, Softtrack)
  • Water Handling (Engine, Water Tender Support
  • Water Tender Tactical)
  • Weed Washing Unit

2. Review the National Solicitation Plan for I-BPA’s to prepare for upcoming solicitations to learn more about the scope of work and requirements.…

3. Opportunities are posted on, however VIPR is the system used for bid submittal and awards. A keyword search on FBO of “VIPR I-BPA” will bring up opportunities posted to date, however please note all solicitations may not be posted yet as different regions may post at different times.

4. Virtual Incident Procurement (VIPR):Get registered as a vendor on the VIPR Vendor Application page here 

5. Generic Solicitations: Please note Contracting Officers may issue various local equipment and services procurements not listed on the National Solicitation Plan for I-BPAs.  Though not all-inclusive, many are listed on the Method of Hire (MOH) chart here


To learn more about how to do business with the Forest Service and how to participate on other Disaster Recovery efforts, plan to attend our “Fire Response and Recovery” workshop on January 17, 2019


Christina Jones, MBA

Sr./Lead Procurement Specialist

Norcal PTAC