Denton County Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP)
The Denton County Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP) is a proactive approach to identify areas in the county that have a higher risk of loss of life and property from potential wildfires, and to develop mitigation strategies to reduce those risks. Satellite information from the Texas Forest Service was used to identify areas in the county where denser vegetation intermixes with homes and businesses. These are areas where the vegetation can act as a fuel to allow a wildfire to rapidly move into a neighborhood and involve multiple structures. Using a standard score sheet, local firefighters assessed each neighborhood (or zone) identified with the satellite information, and rated the risk of each as “low, moderate, high, or extreme.”
It is important to understand that, while the assessment process was designed to be objective, a certain amount of subjectivity was required on the part of the firefighters. For example, there may have been some individual properties in a zone that were at low risk, but overall the neighborhood had an extreme risk score. Conversely, the overall score for the neighborhood may have been low, but some homes were at a higher risk. The assessments are a “snap-shot” of an entire neighborhood on a particular day. This process has been very helpful in identifying potential areas where a catastrophic loss of life and property could occur. However, property owners should not assume that the risk score for their zone reflects the potential risk of their individual property. Citizens should use the information in the “Ready, Set, Go” or “Firewise” programs to evaluate their property and reduce the risk they find. Local fire departments and Denton County Emergency Services can help citizens understand their risk and methods of mitigation.
To see a map of the areas identified as potentially at a higher risk of a catastrophic wildfire, and the score the area was given after being assessed, click here.
Individual property owners can take steps to significantly increase the safety for themselves and their families, while lowering the chance of their homes being lost during a wildfire. To learn more, click here and see the “Ready, Set, Go” program or visit your local fire department.
For information about how neighborhoods can work together to reduce their wildfire risk, click here and learn about “Firewise Communities.”
To learn more about the Denton County Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP), click here and review the plan.