As the homeowner told the Times, she wasn't sure whether it was the public or private firefighters who had saved her home, but she was simply grateful to them all. Some private firefighting companies are employed by insurance companies, while others work on government contracts to augment the efforts of public-sector firefighters in combating massive wildfires. But private firefighting didn't spread across the Atlantic, according to Gary Urbanowicz, director of the New York City Fire Museum. When a wildfire breaks out, the private firefighters may move in to take preventive measures, the spokesman says. Barker said that like their public-sector counterparts, private firefighters are motivated more by duty than pay.