USFS Volunteer Chainsaw and Crosscut Saw Certification
Trails in the National Forests require periodic maintenance.  This task is primarily handled by volunteers.  In order to work as as volunteer, you must sign a USFS Volunteer Agreement with the District(s) where you plan to work.  If you are a member of a trail organization, your organization can submit a USFS Volunteer Agreement along with a membership list instead of individual agreements. Although many task such as cleaning water bars and turnouts, trimming back foliage, and tread repair are usually done on a yearly basis for a given trail, the removal of trees that fall across the trail is an ongoing process year round.  Chainsaws are the primary tool used for this purpose except for Wilderness areas.  Wilderness trail maintenance requires that crews use only traditional tools, so Crosscut Saws are used instead of Chainsaws. In order to use a Chainsaw or Crosscut Saw on National Forest lands, in addition to the Volunteer Agreement you must be certified as a USFS Sawyer by attending a certification class.  In order to attend the certification class and receive your Sawyer Card, you must show proof that you have a current CPR/First Aid Class issued by a nationally recognized organization.  (Red Cross, ASHI, Hospital, Paramedic, etc.)  A USFS Volunteer is considered a Forest Service employee while performing trail work when they have met these requirements and are eligible for Worksman’s Compensation. The Sawyer certification class is the Chainsaw and Crosscut Saw Training Course developed by the USFS Missoula Technology and Development Center. (MTDC)  Although Chainsaw training and Crosscut Saw training are different classes, the Student Guide for these classes is in the same document.
SAWYER CERTIFICATION LEVELS
“A” Sawyer - An apprentice sawyer who may saw only in the least complex situations or, for training purposes, at the next higher level and in either case only under the immediate supervision of a B or C Sawyer qualified to supervise the work. “B” Sawyer Bucking only -  An intermediate sawyer who may independently buck and limb any size material in moderately complex situations and who may saw at the next higher level, but only under the immediate supervision of a sawyer qualified to supervise the work. “B” Sawyer Felling and Bucking -  An intermediate sawyer who may independently fell, buck, and limb any size material in moderately complex situations.  This person may saw at the next higher level under the immediate supervision of a sawyer qualified to supervise the work (FSM 2358.1, ex. 02).  This person may also conduct classroom and field training for A and B Sawyers with prior written approval from the Saw Program Coordinator. “C” Sawyer Bucking Only - An advanced sawyer who may independently buck and limb any size material in highly complex situations based on the Regional Saw Program Manager’s or Saw Program Coordinator’s written recommendation.  The recommendation must be supported by demonstrated advanced saw knowledge, skills, and in most cases certification as a B Sawyer. This person may conduct classroom and field training within that person’s skill level for A and B Sawyers, and may conduct field proficiency evaluations within that person’s skill level for A Sawyers and B Sawyers   Bucking Only.  “C” Sawyer Felling and Bucking - An advanced sawyer who may independently fell, buck, and limb any size material in highly complex situations based on the Regional Saw Program Manager’s or Saw Program Coordinator’s written recommendation.  The recommendation must be supported by demonstrated advanced saw knowledge, skills, and in most cases certification as a B Sawyer.  This person may conduct classroom, field training, and proficiency evaluations for A and B Sawyers. “C” Sawyer Evaluator - An advanced sawyer who may independently fell, buck, and limb any size material in highly complex situations based on the Regional Saw Program Manager’s written recommendation.  The recommendation must be supported by the successful completion of training on organizing and conducting advanced sawyer evaluation sessions in the field, demonstrated advanced saw knowledge and skills, and in most cases certification as a C Sawyer  ̶  Felling and Bucking for at least 3 years.  This person may conduct classroom, field training, and proficiency evaluations for
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