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Wildfires in Western U.S. Pose Risk to 900,000 Homes in 2015

Wildfires in Western U.S. Pose Risk to 900,000 Homes in 2015

Residential News » Denver Edition | By Michael Gerrity | March 2, 2015 9:30 AM ET



According to new data by Irvine, California-based CoreLogic, nearly 900,000 single-family homes across 13 states in the western U.S. are currently designated at "High" or "Very High" risk for wildfire damage, representing a combined total reconstruction value estimated at more than $237 billion. Of the total homes identified, just over 192,000 homes fall into the "Very High Risk" category alone, with total reconstruction cost valued at more than $49.6 billion.

The CoreLogic Wildfire Risk Analysis Report designates risk levels as Very High, High, Moderate and Low. Two additional categories, Urban and Agriculture indicate homes at even lower risk. Homes designated as Urban are located in areas with a dense concentration of buildings and infrastructure to such an extent that little natural vegetation exists to support a wildfire. Homes designated as Agriculture are located in areas comprised of row crops, orchards/vineyards or other specific land use that is typically irrigated. Even if it is not irrigated, the crops are nourished and healthy with no ground litter present, and therefore, the vegetation is unlikely to support or enhance a wildfire.

The analysis also assigns a numeric risk score to each property, ranging from 1 to 100. This separate score indicates the level of susceptibility to wildfire, as well as the risk associated with the property being located in close proximity to another high-risk property or area. The score designation is important since wildfire can easily expand to adjacent properties and cause significant damage even if that property was not originally considered high risk. When expanding the analysis to include the numeric score, more than 1.1 million homes fall under the highest Wildfire Risk Score segment (81-100), representing a combined potential reconstruction value of more than $268.5 billion

WPJ News | Top 10 CBSAs Ranked by Homes at Very High Risk

WPJ News | Total U.S. Properties at Risk and Reconstruction Values by Risk Category


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