Professional wildfire mitigation competency: a potential policy gap

TitleProfessional wildfire mitigation competency: a potential policy gap
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsMiller, RK, Richter, F, Theodori, M, Gollner, MJ
JournalInternational Journal of Wildland Fire
Date Published07/2022
Keywordscertification program, contractor, education, landscaper, professional engineer, structure protection, technical reports and journal articles, training program, wildfire mitigation, wildfire policy, wildland–urban interface

Studies show that effective strategies to mitigate the risk of structural damage in wildfires include defensible spaces and home hardening. Structures in the western United States are especially at risk. Several jurisdictions have adopted codes that require implementation of these strategies. However, construction and landscaping professionals are generally not required to obtain credentials indicating their competency in mitigating the risk of structural damage in a wildfire. We discuss the implications of this policy gap and propose a solution to bolster competency of professionals in wildfire protection as communities further expand in fire-prone areas.