Operations is AFD’s largest division, comprised of personnel who respond to emergency incidents from fire stations strategically located throughout the city.

An assistant chief oversees this division, along with the help of three division chiefs, each of which is responsible for a specific 24-hour shift ("A", "B" or "C"). Battalion chiefs on each shift supervise all of the personnel, stations, and incidents within their battalion (geographic division). Firefighters work 24 hours on, 48 hours off and change shifts at noon. The team assigned to a particular apparatus (engine, truck, or rescue unit) and the apparatus itself is known as "company."

In addition to responding to fires, medical calls, hazardous materials incidents, rescues, and other emergencies, fire station personnel are responsible for conducting fire prevention inspections in their area; developing pre-fire plans of businesses and apartment complexes; participating in continuing education and skills training; maintaining their equipment and station; presenting public education messages at schools, community events, station tours; and installing smoke detectors in low-income homes.