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Fast facts

About the NSW Rural Fire Service

The NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) is the world's largest volunteer fire service. Our members provide fire and emergency services to approximately 95 percent of NSW. NSW RFS members attend a range of incidents and activities:

  • Bush and grass fires
  • House and structure fires
  • Storm damage
  • Search and rescue
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Community education
  • Bush fire mitigation.

The responsibilities of the NSW RFS are set out under the Rural Fires Act 1997.

Our vision and mission

To provide a world standard of excellence in the provision of a community-based fire and emergency service. To protect the community and our environment we will minimise the impact of fire and other emergencies by providing the highest standards of training, community education, prevention and operational capability.

Our values

  • Mutual respect
  • Adaptability and resourcefulness
  • One team, many players, one purpose
  • Integrity and trust
  • Support, friendship, camaraderie
  • Community and environment
  • Knowledge and learning.

Our organisation

Brigades 2,029
Rural Fire Districts 125
District Offices 47
Regional Offices 4



Our membership

Region North 13,305
Region South 21,706
Region East 23,120
Region West 15,413
Total volunteers 74,162

Our staff

Total staff 855

Approximately 70 percent of NSW RFS staff are, or have been, a NSW RFS volunteer.

The incidents we attend

In 2015/16, NSW RFS members attended more than 23,000 incidents across the state.

Incidents 2015/16
Bush/grass fires 7,686
Structural fires 1,166
Vehicle fires 1,808
Motor vehicle accidents 4,562
Investigation 3,654
Controlled burns/pile burns (RFDs)2,502**
Refuse fires 548
Spillage 822
Assist other agencies 1,085
Flood 97
Other 2,092
Total 23,520

*The figure of total bush and grass fires refers to the incidents in which the NSW RFS responded.

**Controlled burns/pile burns are not included in the total incidents figure for 2015/16.

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