Wildfire Risks and Safety Tips
As we close in on the end of summer, wildfires are a potential significant risk for carriers across the US, causing billions in losses each year.
While some wildfires occur naturally, nearly 85% of fires are caused by human error. These errors include:
- Campfire left unattended
- Sparks generated by burning debris
- Equipment use and malfunction
- Negligent discarding of cigarettes
As people move into areas that were previously uninhabited, a new fire threat emerges. Finally, global climate change has caused the increased intensity and frequency of wildfires. With rising temperatures and increased droughts, wildfire risks, particularly in the West, have increased.
If you are looking for more information on current or historic wildfire risks, there are a variety of publicly available resources for tracking wildfire activity. Some of the key sites include:
- National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC): All agencies and geographic areas work together under the auspices and direction of the NIFC. NIFC aggregates data on wildfires across the various regions of the US.
- National Center for Environmental Losses (NCEL): NCEL is tasked with tracking severe weather and climate events in the US. They produce a database of cumulative losses by type and state from 1980 to present. The data includes all losses for events over $1B.
- Geographic Area Coordination Centers (GAAC): The US is divided into 11 Geographic Areas for the purpose of incident management and mobilization of resources. Each region has a website that produces detail on fires in the area. State sites, like CalFire, are also linked here.
Not only do we concern ourselves with safety of our agents and clients, but we also try to make it easier for you to operate in a safer environment. Please review these Wildfire and Wildland Fire Safety Tips to learn about building property protection measures and what steps to take when threatened with a wildfire.
From various training sessions and education information such as our Safety Topics, we provide specialized services to help reduce loss potential, loss costs and control unsafe acts and conditions. To use these valuable resources, visit GAIG.com/LP.
An important value of your insurance coverage is the insurer’s ability and reputation for responding to and handling a claim. Great American’s Property & Inland Marine Division is dedicated to offering excellent claims service to insureds.