College of Forestry

Oregon Statewide Wildfire Hazard Map

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Structures and mixed veg
Photo by EJ Davis

Oregon Statewide Wildfire Hazard Map


Over the last decade, fire seasons have become longer and more challenging. At the same time, Oregon’s population continues to grow and increasing numbers of people are living in housing that is in or near forests, rangelands and other vegetation, called the Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI)

In response to these factors as well as the devastating 2020 Labor Day fires, the Oregon legislature passed a series of bipartisan bills in 2021 and 2023 to help people living in Oregon improve their wildfire preparedness.

As a result, wildfire scientists  at Oregon State University (OSU) have been developing a map that characterizes wildfire hazard for each property across the state. The wildfire hazard map is being developed using the best available science and data and incorporates the expertise of more than 50 fire and fuels professionals from around the state.

The ultimate goal of the map is to help people across Oregon better prepare for future wildfires.

 

How will the map be used? 

The map WILL be used to:

  • Improve the safety and well-being of communities across Oregon.
  • Help Oregonians understand the wildfire hazard in their community.
  • Help public agencies objectively prioritize wildfire hazard reduction efforts.
  • Implement a statewide strategy to improve wildfire resilience.
  • Inform where statewide defensible space codes may apply in high-hazard areas in the WUI.

The map will NOT be used to:

  • Adjust insurance rates (by insurers).
  • Make landowners modify their existing homes unless significant updates are planned for structures within high hazard areas in the WUI.

Once completed later this year, the statewide wildfire hazard map will allow individuals, state agencies, Tribes, and organizations to make informed choices and improve efforts to mitigate future damage to Oregon communities.

Curious about the science behind the map or have more questions? See the FAQ and Understand the Map pages for more details.

Who's Involved and How?


The development and implementation of Oregon’s statewide wildfire hazard map is a collaborative multi-agency effort. Learn more about each agency’s role in map development or use, and how they will use it in the future below:

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Oregon State University Logo

Oregon State University

Oregon State University (OSU) is responsible specifically for technical development of the map, utilizing multiple data sets based on the best available wildfire science. OSU will distribute the final map via the online tool, Oregon Explorer, and will be responsible for updating the map every five years, or as future policy requires. 

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ODF logo

Oregon Department of Forestry

Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) is responsible for policy development, interagency collaboration and the public engagement process regarding the map, including  the homeowner notifications and appeals process.

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OSFM Logo

Oregon State Fire Marshal

The  Oregon State Fire Marshal (OSFM) is responsible for developing a defensible space code applied to properties in the high hazard class within the wildland-urban interface (WUI) across the state. Only buildings located inside the WUI and on a high-hazard property will potentially be subject to the defensible space codes. Defensible space helps protect lives, reduces risk to structures in the event of a wildfire, and creates more resilient homes, people, and communities.

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Department of Consumer and Business Services

Within the Department of Consumer and Business Services (DCBS), two divisions are doing work related to the statewide wildfire risk: the Building Codes Division (BCD) and the Division of Financial Regulation (DFR). BCD is responsible for adopting fire hardening building code standards for new development and significant home updates in high wildfire hazard areas in the wildland-urban interface (WUI). DFR is the state insurance regulator, and offers assistance to consumers regarding wildfire coverage by insurance policies.

How Can You Get Involved?

Landowners and communities across Oregon play an important role in wildfire preparedness, and many have already taken active steps to help create fire-adapted communities. Visit Wildfire Resources to learn more.
 

What's Happening Now


The above state agencies are working together with landowners and communities across the state to reduce wildfire risk and help Oregonians make informed decisions about their property. Oregon State University will refine the statewide wildfire hazard map following a continued public process that includes:

Rulemaking Advisory Committee Meetings (Spring 2024)

Rulemaking Advisory Committee (RAC) meeting discussions will inform ODF on how additional changes may be included in map revisions within the direction provided by legislation. In spring 2024, a rulemaking advisory committee was formed with a focus on providing input regarding whether irrigation for farmland and agricultural crops might be incorporated into the calculations for wildfire hazard assessments. Visit ODF’s Statewide Wildfire Hazard Map Rulemaking Advisory Committee (RAC) website for more information including dates, agendas, and meeting recordings.

 

Community Information Sessions (Summer 2024)

ODF, OSU and our wildfire programs partner agencies will be hosting six open houses in communities throughout the state. These events will provide an opportunity for Oregonians living in the highest hazard areas to talk with agency representatives and get their questions about the hazard map, defensible space, home hardening and insurance answered.

Meetings will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. on the following dates:

  • Redmond—Monday, June 3, Deschutes County Fairgrounds and Expo Center, South Sister Hall, 3800 SW Airport Way, Redmond, OR 97756
  • La Grande—Tuesday, June 4, Union County Fairgrounds, Mount Emily Building, 3604 N 2nd St., La Grande, OR 97850
  • Central Point—Monday, June 17, Jackson County Fairgrounds, Mace Building, 1 Peninger Rd., Central Point, OR 97502
  • Grants Pass—Thursday, June 20, Grants Pass High School, 830 NE 9th St., Grants Pass, OR 97526
  • Klamath Falls—Monday, June 24, Klamath County Event Center, Hall #2, 3531 S 6th St., Klamath Falls, OR 97603
  • The Dalles—Monday, July 1, Oregon Military Department Armory, 402 E. Scenic Dr., The Dalles, OR 97058