S. E. Williams
A report has revealed the inland area has more homes at extreme risk of being damaged by wildfire than any community in any of the 13 western states included in the survey.
The report was completed by CoreLogic, a leading provider of consumer, financial and property information to business and governments.
The study categorized fire dangers into low, moderate, high and extreme categories. Areas were scored on their susceptibility to wildfire and their proximity to high-risk areas that included consideration of surrounding vegetation and terrain.
The study considered 258 statistical areas in 13 states and concluded that homes in the statistical area identified as Riverside- San Bernardino-Ontario were the most at risk. For years, both Riverside and San Bernardino Counties continued to develop property in the wildland urban interface—the U.S. Forest Service defined the wildland urban interface as the area where houses meet or intermingle with undeveloped wildland vegetation.
Current drought conditions have resulted in the continuing fear that there exists a strong possibility for fires to grow into large blazes and cause significant property loss in these areas. The report confirmed, “With a resurgence of new-home construction in the U.S. since 2008, more homes than ever are located in areas with an elevated risk for wildfire activity.”
In the Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario area, according to the study, about 1.17 million homes are at some kind of risk for wildfire damage—most of them, just over a million, were in the low-risk category; over 22,000 were identified as being at moderate risk; about 51,000 were categorized as high risk; while nearly 52,000 were considered at extreme risk. Collectively, California has more than nine million homes at risk of wildfire damage—more than any other state in the nation.
To view the CoreLogic Wildfire Risk Report in detail visit corelogic.com/research/wildfire-risk-report/2015-wildfire-hazard-risk-report.pdf.