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Wildfire Risk

Improving Statewide Wildfire Risk Assessment

What kinds of local community information would improve the statewide assessment the most? Many kinds of information can improve the statewide risk assessment!

For each of the following information categories, state information needs are listed in priority order:

Density of homes/population

  1. GIS point or structure outline of dwellings or businesses (not outbuildings)
  2. GIS centroids of “improved” tax lots
  3. Determined by local knowledge

Community or Jurisdiction Name

Jurisdictional names used in the Communities At Risk Assessment may be different from the name in a signed CWPP or common name used by a local government.

When community name or names in a signed CWPP don't align with the state list, please provide clarification.

Community Boundaries

The statewide assessment lacks good information concerning local CWPP boundaries.

  1. Community boundaries based upon a signed CWPP
  2. Corrected jurisdictional boundaries
  3. Jurisdictions subdivided based upon the community at risk definition

Wildland-Urban Interface Boundaries

  1. GIS layer of WUI boundary from a signed CWPP
  2. WUI boundary determined by a wildland fire protection agency using local knowledge of fuels, prevailing winds, historic burn patterns, and areas where strategic fuel break opportunities need to be considered.

Fire locations, occurrence, risk

  1. GIS layer of fire district wildfire occurrence not reported by ODF or a federal agency.
  2. Fire locations or GIS density grid of non-ODF, non-federal jurisdiction derived from documented data (911 records) using the process described in the GIS metadata.
  3. A map covering non-ODF, non-federal jurisdiction with areas of low, moderate, and high wildfire risk delineated based upon local knowledge.

Hazardous Fuels

The vegetation and related fire-potential data used to determine fire characteristics are inferred from 1992-1996 satellite imagery. To compensate for the age of this data, burn severity data from recent large fires was used to update the vegetation data.

The process used to update the fuels data was developed through expert opinion and applies by ecoregion around the state. Assumptions were made about the flammability of nonforest vegetation (hay/pasture, etc) based on geographic region in the state. Data have not been field verified in many locations.

The fuels layer in the Oregon Statewide Communities at Risk Assessment will be updated with LANDFIRE (Landscape Fire and Resource Management Planning Tools Project) data when it becomes available. HOWEVER, local review of the cross-walk assumptions used to generate a fuel model layer is still of value, especially for non-forest vegetation types.

Fire Protection

  1. Validate and provide a GIS update of protection capability using the best local knowledge available, i.e. 911 response times, road access for fire equipment, etc.
    Assign a “1” (LOW Risk) to areas where effective and consistent structural fire response occurs within 10 minutes- generally where full-time or moderate to high capacity volunteer departments can access fires within 10 minutes.
    Assign a “2” (MEDIUM Risk) to areas where there is wildland response, but structural response within 10 minutes is limited and/or does not exist.
    Assign a “3” (HIGH Risk) to areas with no organized response.
  2. Provide a written description of the above rating based upon a known geographic boundary (i.e. fire district).

Municipal Watersheds

  1. GIS layer of watersheds meeting the Healthy Forest Restoration Act (HFRA) municipal watershed definition AND name of municipality AND number (population) of users if known.
  2. A map of watersheds meeting the HFRA municipal watershed definition AND number (population) of users if known.