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How risk management can prevent future wildfire disasters in the wildland-urban interface

Author(s): David E. Calkin, Jack D. Cohen, Mark A. Finney, Matthew P. Thompson
Year Published: 2013
Description:

Recent fire seasons in the western United States are some of the most damaging and costly on record. Wildfires in the wildland-urban interface on the Colorado Front Range, resulting in thousands of homes burned and civilian fatalities, although devastating, are not without historical reference. These fires are consistent with the characteristics of large, damaging, interface fires that threaten communities across much of the western United States. Wildfires are inevitable, but the destruction of homes, ecosystems, and lives is not. We propose the principles of risk analysis to provide land management agencies, first responders, and affected communities who face the inevitability of wildfires the ability to reduce the potential for loss. Overcoming perceptions of wildland-urban interface fire disasters as a wildfire control problem rather than a home ignition problem, determined by home ignition conditions, will reduce home loss.

Citation: Calkin, David E.; Cohen, Jack D.; Finney, Mark A.; Thompson, Matthew P. 2014. How risk management can prevent future wildfire disasters in the wildland-urban interface. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 111(2): 746-751.
Topic(s): Wildland Urban Interface, Risk & Uncertainty
Ecosystem(s): None
Document Type: Book or Chapter or Journal Article
NRFSN number: 12757
FRAMES RCS number: 16487
Record updated: Jun 30, 2016