International Journal of Wildland Fire International Journal of Wildland Fire Society
Journal of the International Association of Wildland Fire
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Forest fire risk assessment using point process modelling of fire occurrence and Monte Carlo fire simulation

Hyeyoung Woo A , Woodam Chung B E , Jonathan M. Graham C and Byungdoo Lee D
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A Department of Forest Management, The University of Montana, 32 Campus Drive, Missoula, MT 59812, USA.

B Department of Forest Engineering, Resources and Management, 267 Peavy Hall, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97333, USA.

C Department of Mathematical Sciences, The University of Montana, 32 Campus Drive, Missoula, MT 59812, USA.

D National Institute of Forest Science, Hoegiro 57, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul, 130-712, Republic of Korea.

E Corresponding author. Email: woodam.chung@oregonstate.edu

International Journal of Wildland Fire 26(9) 789-805 https://doi.org/10.1071/WF17021
Submitted: 4 February 2017  Accepted: 20 June 2017   Published: 31 August 2017

Abstract

Risk assessment of forest fires requires an integrated estimation of fire occurrence probability and burn probability because fire spread is largely influenced by ignition locations as well as fuels, weather, topography and other environmental factors. This study aims to assess forest fire risk over a large forested landscape using both fire occurrence and burn probabilities. First, we use a spatial point processing method to generate a fire occurrence probability surface. We then perform a Monte Carlo fire spread simulation using multiple fire ignition points generated from the fire occurrence surface to compute burn probability across the landscape. Potential loss per land parcel due to forest fire is assessed as the combination of burn probability and government-appraised property values. We applied our methodology to the municipal boundary of Gyeongju in the Republic of Korea. The results show that the density of fire occurrence is positively associated with low elevation, moderate slope, coniferous land cover, distance to roads, high density of tombs and interaction among fire ignition locations. A correlation analysis among fire occurrence probability, burn probability, land property value and potential value loss indicates that fire risk in the study landscape is largely associated with the spatial pattern of burn probability.

Additional keywords: fire behaviour, fire simulation modelling, ignition, propagation.


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