Development of a platform for wildfire incident support and evaluation of post-fire impacts

Project ID: 20019
Principal Investigator: Kendra Fallon
Research Topic: Water Quality
Funded Fiscal Years: 2020 and 2021
Keywords: None

Research Question

This project will help develop a geographic display of assets and other information for use during wildfire incident response to identify vulnerable Reclamation infrastructure in order to better communicate with fire management agencies during fire suppression and wildland fire management activities. This product will also be useful during post-fire analysis to better understand sedimentation and post-fire water flow modeling using the WEEP-PEP model.

Need and Benefit

Currently, the PN Region does not have an effective, accurate, and efficient way to display the natural, cultural and O&M values at risk to wildfires. The agencies that work on Reclamation's behalf to suppress fire initiate suppression actions immediately and do so using heavy equipment (e.g. bulldozers) that can cause damage to our irreplaceable resources . These impacts could be avoided if there were spatial products to use to communicate with Incident Commanders and Incident Management Teams.

During longer duration fires, having the ability to communicate to ICs and IMTs the assets that should be protected (e.g. SCADA sites, HydroMet stations, structures, and tribal and cultural values) through prepositioning of resources, avoidance of suppression actions, or other protection tactics would save Reclamation the time, labor and money of repairing damaged infrastructure or values.

This project would also allow for the easy application of existing post-fire models designed to estimate near-term and long-term sedimentation with the added benefit of knowing which reservoirs, Projects, and facilities are potentially most affected.

Contributing Partners

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Research Products

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Last Updated: 6/22/20