Each year, a small percentage of fires grow to sizes that require fire fighters and resources beyond normal suppression needs. In B.C., 27 highly trained and coordinated 20-person unit crews are available for deployment to these larger fires. A unit crew may be broken into smaller groups depending on the nature of fire activity.
Unit crews establish pumps and hose lines, dig fire guards, use chainsaws, and burn off fuel from the fire's path. Work can take fire fighters into difficult terrain amidst dry, hot, and smoky conditions for up to 14 days.
When away from their base, they may live in a temporary fire camp with few amenities.
Like their initial attack counterparts, unit crews are highly mobile and can be called away from their base to work on fires anywhere in British Columbia or North America.