Encyclopedia of Wildfires and Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) Fires

Living Edition
| Editors: Samuel L. Manzello

Wildland Fire Rate of Spread

  • Andrew L. Sullivan
  • James S. Gould
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-51727-8_55-1

Synonyms

Definition

Rate of spread is a measure of the speed of progression of a fire perimeter and can be expressed as the forward, backing, or flanking speed relative to the direction of the prevailing wind driving fire spread. Other measures such as rate of increase or growth of fire area or perimeter may also be used to quantify the rate of progression of a wildland fire.

Introduction

Knowledge about the progression of a wildland fire is essential to planning and conducting fire suppression actions, issuing warnings about the likely impact of the fire, and ensuring the safety of firefighters and the general public (Plucinski et al. 2017). Knowing how fast a wildland fire will spread is also essential for understanding potential impacts of planned prescribed burns. Of all the attributes of a wildland fire, the rate of spreadof the fire in the direction of the prevailing wind has...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

References

  1. Albini FA (1976) Estimating wildfire behavior and effects, USDA Forest Service general technical report INT-30. Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, OdgenGoogle Scholar
  2. Cheney NP (1990) Quantifying bushfires. Math Comput Model 13:9–15. https://doi.org/10.1016/0895-7177(90)90094-4CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Cheney NP, Gould JS (1997) Fire growth and acceleration. Int J Wildland Fire 7:1–5. https://doi.org/10.1071/WF9970001CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Gould JS, Sullivan AL (in prep) Two methods for calculating wildland fire forward spread rate. (To be submitted to International Journal of Wildland Fire and should be published before this encyclopaedia is published)Google Scholar
  5. Gould JS, Sullivan AL, Hurley R, Koul V (2017) Comparison of three methods to quantify the fire spread rate in laboratory experiments. Int J Wildland Fire 26:877–883. https://doi.org/10.1071/WF17038CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. McAlpine R, Wakimoto R (1991) The acceleration of fire from point source to equilibrium spread. For Sci 37:1314–1337Google Scholar
  7. Plucinski MP, Sullivan AL, Rucinski CJ, Prakash M (2017) Improving the reliability and utility of operational bushfire behaviour predictions in Australian vegetation. Environ Model Softw 91:1–12. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsoft.2017.01.019CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CSIRO Land and WaterCanberraAustralia

Section editors and affiliations

  • Anne Ganteaume
    • 1
  1. 1.RECOVER-EMRIRSTEAAix-en-ProvenceFrance