How much do wildfire helicopter pilots make?

How much do wildfire helicopter pilots make?

While ZipRecruiter is seeing annual salaries as high as $99,000 and as low as $22,000, the majority of Fire Helicopter Pilot salaries currently range between $49,500 (25th percentile) to $79,500 (75th percentile) with top earners (90th percentile) making $91,000 annually across the United States.

How do you become a wildfire pilot?


  1. 1,500 hours total in all aircraft (NOTE: The majority of Dauntless Air pilots who meet all qualification requirements were hired with an excess of 4,000 hours total time)
  2. 1,200 hours in airplanes.
  3. 200 hours in airplane single engine land.

What is a firefighter helicopter called?

Helitack crews are teams of wildland firefighters who are transported by helicopter to wildfires. Helitack crews may land near a wildfire or, if equipped and trained, rappel from a hovering helicopter. Once on the ground, crews build firelines using hand tools, chainsaws, and other firefighting tools.

How do I become a Cal Fire helicopter pilot?

Minimum Qualifications

  1. At least 500 hours of mountain pilot-in-command helicopter flight time, routinely making landings in mountainous terrain above 4,000 feet MSL.
  2. At least 500 hours of turbine helicopter time as pilot-in- command.

Do airline pilots make more than helicopter pilots?

Mature experienced airplane pilots can make well over $100,000 per year, but it takes longer to get to the big money than it does for helicopter pilots. Experienced helicopter pilots can make $65,000 to $85,000, and some make up to 100K and above.

Do helicopters need a runway?

Helicopters have a little more freedom and are able to stay at a lower altitude. Helicopters are also legally able to get closer to landmarks and objects because of the easy maneuverability of the aircraft and because they don’t need a runway to land and take off.

Do firefighters make 6 figures?

If you include extra pay and overtime, it’s very possible for many firefighters to make over six figures per year. If you are in a more average paying area, you can still make more than 100 thousand dollars per year, depending on how much overtime hours are available and how much you are willing to work.

What is Washington State DNR wildfire aviation?

Washington State DNR Wildfire Aviation is a highly trained air–ground firefighting team available for Initial Attack (IA) rapid response to wildland fires.

How many pilots does wildfire aviation have?

Wildfire Aviation employs one program manager, one fixed wing program manager, helitack operations manager, and aircraft maintenance supervisor, 14 U.S. Forest Service certified helicopter pilots, seven aviation maintenance technicians (AMT) who maintain, and configure the aircraft, and one chief pilot who leads the team.

What is the wildfire aviation program?

The Aviation Program Washington State DNR Wildfire Aviation is a highly trained air–ground firefighting team available for Initial Attack (IA) rapid response to wildland fires.

How does helitack work in Washington State?

Helitack and Aviation Programs seamlessly integrate to deliver premier aerial firefighting capabilities to interagency wildfires in Washington state. Aircraft and Helitack crews attempt to respond to emerging fires within five minutes. Planning is conducted in the air using satellite imagery and mobile devices.

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