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Communities At Risk

Communities At Risk

To help protect people and their property from potential catastrophic wildfire, the National Fire Plan directs funding to be provided for projects designed to reduce the fire risks to communities. A fundamental step in achieving this goal was the identification of communities that are at high risk of damage from wildfire. These high risk communities identified within the wildland-urban interface, the area where homes and wildlands intermix, were published in the Federal Register in 2001. At the request of Congress, the Federal Register notice only listed those communities neighboring federal lands. The list represents the collaborative work of the 50 states and five federal agencies using a standardized process, whereby states were asked to submit all communities within their borders that met the criteria of a structure at high risk from wildfire.

With California's extensive urban Wildland-Urban Interface situation, the list of communities extends beyond just those adjacent to Federal lands. There are 1,289 communities currently on the Communities at Risk List. The California State Forester (CAL FIRE Director) has assigned the role of managing the list to the California Fire Alliance ( Alliance). The Alliance has recently developed a process whereby communities can be added or removed from the list of "communities at risk" to wildfire.

Changing Your Status on the List

To add or remove a community to the list of high fire risk communities in California, the following process has been identified. For more information on protecting communities at risk to wildfire please visit the National Fire Plan website or contact your local CAL FIRE Unit or land management agency such as the Bureau of Land Management and US Forest Service.

How to apply:

  • Print and complete the Communities at Risk Application Form (2.1M PDF).
  • Submit completed form to the address listed on the application.
  • All applications are received year round and will be reviewed by the California Fire Alliance Leadership. Results of the review will be communicated to the applicant in writing.

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