Megafires: The Case for Mitigation - Witch Creek Wildfire, San Diego CA

The Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) announced findings from comprehensive research into the Witch Creek Wildfire, which damaged or destroyed nearly 1,700 structures in San Diego County in 2007, causing $1 billion in insured losses. The study is titled "Megafires: The Case for Mitigation", and IBHS has produced a 48-page report, video, and animations to help demonstrate the findings.

MegaFires Book Cover
Also available are a wildfire home assessment checklist, and a retrofit guide to help homeowners better protect themselves and their property from wildfire damages.

Major findings of this IBHS study include:
  • Homes situated less than 15 feet apart are at high risk. While homes adjacent to wildlands are most vulnerable, homes in the interior areas of neighborhoods that were located less than 15 feet apart were much more likely to burn in clusters.
  • Wind-blown embers caused the most damage to homes during this wildfire. In fact, there were few, if any, reports of homes burned as a result of direct contact with flames.
  • None of the homes in communities built using Shelter-in-Place standards burned. The code-plus requirements for the construction and ongoing maintenance of these communities proved to be extremely effective in reducing damage.

Read the Press Release here and get free access to the report and tools here.

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