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State of Washington Classified Job Specification


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Class Code: 654F
Category: Marine-Ferry & Aircraft


Pilot in command of multi-engine aircraft or amphibious seaplane aircraft on Departmental operations, law enforcement missions or administrative business; pilot in command of helicopters in support of agency missions, natural resource requirements, and firefighting operations.

Typical Work

Pilots single and/or multi-engine aircraft over hazardous terrain at low altitudes for such purposes as aerial surveying and timber and fire patrol, planting fish, conducting aerial census', aerial surveys, or aerial photography; low level flights over mountainous terrain and fire areas to drop supplies and equipment and provide aerial reconnaissance over wildfires;

Serves as Pilot-in-Command and ensures safe operation of assigned helicopter operations and aircrew personnel that responds to wildfires throughout Washington State; selects operating location; selects best approach to drop zone and makes retardant drops on fire; coordinates with ground personnel to ensure maximum effectiveness of retardant drops;

Assists with scheduling the use of aircraft for enforcement, conservation, administrative business or other governmental agencies;

Coordinates air search missions for aircraft missing in the state;

Assists communities with planning, layout and safety factors in construction on new airports;

Plans flights, obtains clearances, and files flight plans with Federal Aviation Agency as required;

Performs considerable flying by sole reference to aircraft flight instruments under all weather conditions (IFR);

Transports fire crews, equipment and hazardous materials to unprepared and confined landing sites; uses cargo net and long line to sling equipment to fire crews; delivers high gross weight water loads to porta-tanks for the use of fire crews; provides aerial ambulance service as required;

Maintains flight and engine logs of aircraft flight time; makes prescribed inspections and performs necessary routine maintenance and repair to aircraft, support equipment, and engines under qualified supervision;

Patrols an assigned area, in the air, on water, or on the ground, to check for violations of state or federal fish and wildlife laws; makes arrests and testifies in court;

Completes records of aircraft movements and work performed for all agencies; prepares reports of flying activities;

Performs other work as required.

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of: Federal Air Regulations, Part 91; principles of flight; mountain flying techniques; meteorology; instrument flying techniques; principles and practices of effective supervision.

Ability to: fly an aircraft under extremely hazardous conditions at low altitudes and conditions of low visibility; operate from rough improvised landing sites; make quick, accurate decisions when unexpected situations develop in flight; exercise judgment and tact when dealing with the public; learn, interpret, and enforce state and federal fish and wildlife laws and rules; plan and supervise the work of others; prepare reports.

Legal Requirement(s)

There may be instances where individual positions must have additional licenses or certification. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure the appropriate licenses/certifications are obtained for each position.

Desirable Qualifications

Fixed Wing Option:

2,000 hours of turbo-prop and/or reciprocating engine logged flight time, including low level flight, below 500 feet, with 1500 hours Pilot- In-Command (PIC) and a minimum of 500 hours of time in multi-engined aircraft and a minimum of 100 hours of actual instrument time. A current Class II flight physical and a valid Federal Aviation Agency Commercial Certificate is required with an instrument rating and a rating in one or more of the following categories:

A. Single engine land

B. Single engine sea

C. Multi-engine land

D. Multi-engine sea


Helicopter Option:
1,500 hours of Pilot-In-Command (PIC) time in turbine engine powered helicopters required.
  • 200 hours of helicopter mountain time
  • A current, valid FAA Commercial Certificate with Helicopter rating
  • A current FAA Class II flight physical
  • 100 hours in UH-1H Helicopters
  • 10 hours solo Pilot in Command Longline Operations

Class Specification History

New class: 5-1-63
General revision: 6-1-64
Revised minimum qualifications: 2-1-66
General revision: 7-1-66
General revision: 4-1-69
Revised definition, minimum qualifications, general revision, title change (formerly Airplane Pilot 2): 11-12-93
Revised definition: 6-9-00
Revised new class code: (formerly 73500) effective July 1, 2007
Salary adjustment adopted June 30, 2015; effective July 1, 2015.
Base range salary adjustment adopted 6/30/2017, effective 7/1/2017; 53 increased to 59.
Base range salary adjustment adopted 06/22/2023, effective 7/1/2023.
Revised definition adopted 06/22/2023, effective 7/1/2023.
Revised typical work, desirable qualifications as of 6/22/2023.