CSIRO Publishing blank image blank image blank image blank imageBooksblank image blank image blank image blank imageJournalsblank image blank image blank image blank imageAbout Usblank image blank image blank image blank imageShopping Cartblank image blank image blank image You are here: Journals > International Journal of Wildland Fire   
International Journal of Wildland Fire
http://www.iawfonline.org/
  Published on behalf of the International Association of Wildland Fire
 
blank image Search
 
blank image blank image
blank image
 
  Advanced Search
   

Journal Home
About the Journal
Editorial Board
Contacts
Content
Online Early
Current Issue
Just Accepted
All Issues
Special Issues
Research Fronts
Sample Issue
20-Year Author Index
For Authors
General Information
Notice to Authors
Submit Article
Open Access
For Referees
Referee Guidelines
Review an Article
For Subscribers
Subscription Prices
Customer Service
Print Publication Dates

blue arrow e-Alerts
blank image
Subscribe to our Email Alert or RSS feeds for the latest journal papers.

red arrow Connect with CP
blank image
facebook twitter youtube

 

Article << Previous     |     Next >>   Contents Vol 22(6)

Living in a tinderbox: wildfire risk perceptions and mitigating behaviours

Patricia A. Champ A D , Geoffrey H. Donovan B and Christopher M. Barth C

A US Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, 240 West Prospect Avenue, Fort Collins, CO 80526, USA.
B US Forest Service, Portland Forestry Sciences Lab, 620 SW Main Street, Suite 400, Portland, OR 97205 USA.
C Bureau of Land Management, Southwest District Fire Management Program, 2465 South Townsend Avenue, Montrose, CO 81401, USA.
D Corresponding author. Email: pchamp@fs.fed.us

International Journal of Wildland Fire 22(6) 832-840 http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/WF12093
Submitted: 14 June 2012  Accepted: 23 January 2013   Published: 31 May 2013


 
PDF (143 KB) $25
 Export Citation
 Print
  
Abstract

The loss of homes to wildfires is an important issue in the USA and other countries. Yet many homeowners living in fire-prone areas do not undertake mitigating actions, such as clearing vegetation, to decrease the risk of losing their home. To better understand the complexity of wildfire risk-mitigation decisions and the role of perceived risk, we conducted a survey of homeowners in a fire-prone area of the front range of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. We examine the relationship between perceived wildfire risk ratings and risk-mitigating behaviours in two ways. First, we model wildfire risk-mitigation behaviours as a function of perceived risk. Then, we model wildfire risk-mitigation behaviours and perceived risk simultaneously. The results of the simultaneous model suggest that perceived risk and wildfire risk-mitigating behaviours are jointly determined. By correctly specifying the relationship between risk perceptions and mitigating behaviours, we are better able to understand the relationship between other factors, such as exposure to a wildfire-mitigation program and wildfire risk-mitigating behaviours. We also find that having a wood roof, as well as homeowner age, income and previous experience with living in a fire-prone area, are associated with wildfire risk-mitigating behaviours.

Additional keywords: natural hazard, wildland–urban interface.


References

Baker J, Shaw WD, Bell D, Brody S, Riddel M, Woodward RT, Neilson W (2009) Explaining subjective risks of hurricanes and the role of risks in intended moving and location choice models. Natural Hazards Review 10, 102–112.
CrossRef |

Beatson R, McLennan J (2011) What applied social psychology theories might contribute to community bushfire safety research after Victoria’s ‘Black Saturday’. Australian Psychologist 46, 171–182.
CrossRef |

Beebe GS, Omi PN (1993) Wildland burning: the perception of risk. Journal of Forestry 91, 19–24.

Botts H, Thomas J, Steven K, McCabe S, Suhr L (2012) ‘CoreLogic Wildfire Hazard Risk Report.’ (CoreLogic: Santa Ana, CA)

Brenkert-Smith H, Champ PA, Flores N (2012) Trying not to get burned: determinants of homeowner wildfire risk mitigation behaviors. Environmental Management 50, 1139–1151.
CrossRef | PubMed |

Champ PA, Donovan GH, Barth C (2009) Homebuyers and wildfire risk: a Colorado Springs case study. Society & Natural Resources 23, 58–70.
CrossRef |

Climate Central (2012) The Age of Western Wildfires. Climate Central. (Palo Alto, CA)

Cohen JD (2000) Preventing disaster. Home ignitibility in the wildland–urban interface. Journal of Forestry 98, 15–21.

Collins TW (2008) What influences hazard mitigation? Household decision making about wildfire risks in Arizona’s White Mountains. The Professional Geographer 60, 508–526.
CrossRef |

Donovan GH, Champ PA, Butry DT (2007) The impact of wildfire risk on housing price: a case study from Colorado Springs. Land Economics 83, 217–233.

Gordon JS, Luloff A, Stedman RC (2012) A multisite qualitative comparison of community wildfire risk perceptions. Journal of Forestry 110, 74–78.
CrossRef |

Jakus PM, Shaw WD, Nguyen TN, Walker M (2009) Risk perceptions of arsenic in tap water and consumption of bottled water. Water Resources Research 45, W05405
CrossRef |

Liu Y, Stanturf J, Goodrick S (2010) Trends in global wildfire potential in a changing climate. Forest Ecology and Management 259, 685–697.
CrossRef |

Martin IM, Bender H, Raish C (2007) What motivates individuals to protect themselves from risks: the case of wildland fires. Risk Analysis 27, 887–900.
CrossRef | PubMed |

Martin WE, Martin IM, Kent B (2009) The role of risk perceptions in the risk mitigation process: the case of wildfire in high risk communities. Journal of Environmental Management 91, 489–498.
CrossRef | PubMed |

McCaffrey SM (2002) For Want of Defensible Space a Forest is Lost: Homeowners and the Wildfire Hazard and Mitigation in Residential Wildland Intermix at Incline Village, Nebraska. PhD dissertation, University of California – Berkeley.

McCaffrey SM, Stidham M, Toman E, Schindler B (2011) Outreach programs, peer pressure, and common sense: what motivates homeowners to mitigate wildfire risk? Environmental Management 48, 475–488.
CrossRef | PubMed |

McFarlane BL, McGee TK, Faulkner H (2011) Complexity of homeowner wildfire risk mitigation: an integration of hazard theories. International Journal of Wildland Fire 20, 921–931.
CrossRef |

Nguyen N, Jakus PM, Riddel M, Shaw WD (2010) An empirical model of perceived mortality risks for selected US arsenic hot spots. Risk Analysis 30, 1550–1562.
CrossRef |

Smith VK, Desvousges WH, Payne JW (1995) Do risk information programs promote mitigating behavior? Journal of Risk and Uncertainty 10, 203–221.
CrossRef |

Weinstein ND, Nicolich M (1993) Correct and incorrect interpretations of correlations between risk perceptions and risk behaviors. Health Psychology 12, 235–245.
CrossRef | CAS | PubMed |

Whitehead JC, Edwards B, Van Willigen M, Maiolo JR, Wilson K, Smith KT (2001) Heading for higher ground: factors affecting real and hypothetical hurricane evacuation behavior. Environmental Hazards 2, 133–142.
CrossRef |

Winter G, Fried JS (2000) Homeowner perspectives on fire hazard, responsibility, and management strategies at the wildland–urban interface. Society & Natural Resources 13, 33–49.
CrossRef |

Wooldridge JM (2006) ‘Introductory Econometrics, Third Edition.’ (Thomson South-Western: Mason, OH)


   
Subscriber Login
Username:
Password:  

 
    
Legal & Privacy | Contact Us | Help

CSIRO

© CSIRO 1996-2014