Communities Threatened by Wildfires, 2000-2017

View an update to this research, showing communities threatened by wildfire from 2000-2019.

  • More than 3,000 communities had a wildfire of 100+ acres burn within ten miles of town.
  • At least 1,100 communities experienced a major wildfire event (greater than 1,000 acres in size) within ten miles.
  • Nearly 850 communities experienced a 100+ acre wildfire that burned less than 700 feet from town.

Wildfires today are larger, burn longer, cause more damage, and kill more people than ever before.

This map tool identifies communities threatened by wildfires from 2000-2017. It also shows the different sizes of wildfires and distances from nearby communities.

As the costs and dangers of wildfires have increased, many groups and communities are working to minimize wildfire risk through education, defensible space around properties, fuel reduction, peer-to-peer learning networks, adoption of land use planning, regulatory tools, and other efforts.

This map tool and sortable data table may be useful in identifying frequently impacted areas for those working to help communities become fire-adapted. It is not a predictive model of wildfire potential or probability.

Ray Rasker, Ph.D.

For more information about this topic contact:

Kelly Pohl