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

Detection of non-linearities in the dependence of burn area on fuel age and climatic variables

International Journal of Wildland Fire 12(1) 1 - 6
Published: 17 March 2003


Evidence from Los Angeles County in California, USA suggests that the relationships between wildfire burn area and fuel age, temperature, precipitation, and fuel moisture are not linear. Instead, the relationships appear to have thresholds.The data seem to support the notion that fire risk is nearly constant provided various conditions are met: that fuel age and temperature exceed a given threshold, and that fuel moisture and precipitation are sufficiently low. There appears to be little distinction in terms of wildfire risk between conditions that are sufficient for wildfires and those that are extreme.

Keywords: fire weather; time-since-fire; temperature; precipitation; fuel moisture; Los Angeles; California; chaparral; fire statistics; thresholds.

© IAWF 2003

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