FIRE OPS 101: Q & A

Questions From the Field, Answers From Experts

To submit a question, email [email protected] or call the Education Department at (202) 824-1533.

Where can I learn more about putting on a FIRE OPS 101 event?
In addition to visiting the IAFF FIRE OPS 101 website at, there are several other options:

  • Attend the IAFF’s Partnership Education Department (PEP) workshop, “Planning FIRE OPS 101,” at the Vincent J. Bollon Affiliate Leadership Training Summit (ALTS) or contact your state or provincial association to host the workshop in your area.
  • Attend the FIRE OPS 101 (Train-the-Trainer) workshop at the ALTS
  • Email your questions to [email protected]

Can a small local host a FIRE OPS 101 event?
Yes, a small local can definitely host the event. To host the event you need a location, manpower, equipment and participants. So, with strategic planning and preparation you can carry out a successful event despite your size. Consider outside resources such as teaming up with other locals in the area or ask your state or provincial association for assistance. Consider having the event on a smaller scale. You will implement your event based on what you have available. If you don’t have a training academy, you may consider an open field. Your scenarios will be different based on that location, but it is still possible to host a successful event. In the end, you want to influence your elected officials no matter what you do.

Does the IAFF have a partnership with any fire gear manufacturers to help outfit our invited guests?
Typically the department hosting FIRE OPS 101 uses turnout/bunker gear, including boots and helmets that they have in stock or in reserve. If a department does not have reserves, they may borrow from a neighboring department. Although the IAFF has relationships with manufacturers, it is for the design of fire fighter gear to ensure that it meets appropriate regulation. The IAFF does not have a relationship with manufacturers to provide gear for FIRE OPS 101 events.

How do organizations perform fit testing to meet OSHA regulations? Do all of the participants undergo qualitative fit testing the day of the program?
FIRE OPS 101 events should do a qualitative fit test to ensure mask fit for the participant. This test can be conducted by placing the mask on the participant then using a particular test agent that creates a subjective sensation (taste, irritation, smell) to the respirator wearer. During this process, we explain that fire fighters are required to go through a more specific fit testing procedure, called a quantitative fit test, due to the hazards in their work environment. This test is much more time consuming and is not feasible for a FIRE OPS 101 event.

Visit the IAFF FIRE OPS 101 website at to learn more information.