Though a natural part of the many and varied ecosystems of Idaho, wildfire is one of the most feared, fought and controversial components of our physical environment. Wildfires are unplanned wildland fires that spread quickly through forests and rangelands.
Gain an understanding of fire ecology and obtain important information about living and playing in the wildland/urban interface.
Fire and the Wildland/Urban Interface
The wildland/urban interface (WUI) refers to areas where people have built homes in or near adjacent wildland areas.
WUI areas often abut against state or federal forest and rangelands. Learn how to increase the fire “resistiveness" of both your home and surrounding landscape, and what to do in the event of a wildfire emergency.
- Protecting and Landscaping Homes in the Wildland/Urban Interface (SB 67)
- Fire Resistant Plants for Home Landscapes (PNW 590)
- Are You Prepared? (PDF)
- Do I Still Believe in Landscaping for Fire Prevention? (PDF)
- Landscaping for Fire Prevention (PDF)
- Top 10 Worst Reasons to Not Prepare your Home for Forest Fires (PDF)
- The Idaho Firewise program (PDF)
- Are You Ready for a Blizzard of Red Snow? (PDF)
- Wildfire: Not If, But When (PDF)
- Mulches for Firewise Landscapes (PDF)
- Maintaining Fire Resistive Landscapes (PDF)
- Managing Fire on Lands Protected by the State of Idaho: A Handbook for Policy Makers, Landowners and Idaho Citizens (PDF)
- Idaho Fire Info
- Idaho Firewise
- National Interagency Fire Center
- Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
- The United States Red Cross
- Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN)
Homeowners living in the wildland/urban interface need to be prepared to evacuate themselves, their pets and their livestock in the event of a wildfire disaster. Once evacuation orders have been given, it is vitally important that WUI residents leave early — 60 percent of lives lost to wildland fire are of those that chose to stay and wait and see, and then evacuated too late.
- Have a Plan (PDF) will help you make an evacuation plan for you and your family, as well as your pets and livestock.
- In the Event of a Wildfire (PDF) provides you with checklists on what to do in the event of a wildfire.
- If You Get Trapped (PDF) gives some suggestions of what you can do if you were unable to evacuate in time and become trapped in your home or car.
- Returning Home (PDF) provides you with the necessary information to return home safely and what to do next.
- Replacing Important Lost or Damaged Documents in Idaho (Bul 903) provides you with information on how to replace your important papers.
- Wildfire Preparedness for Pets and Livestock (PDF) guides you through the preparations you need to make to ensure the safety of your beloved pets and large animals.
How to Report a Wildfire
- Call 911 if you have 911 services.
- Call your county sheriff or local emergency dispatch center.
The landscapes of Idaho are ones dependent on periodic wildfires. Learn more about the ecology of fire and how it is essential for the maintenance of healthy forests.
- NEW - Wildfire and Water (PDF)
- After the Burn: Assessing and Managing Your Forestland after a Wildfire (SB 76)
- Fire in Forest Ecosystems of the Inland West (PDF)
- Prescribed Burning: A Natural Way to Manage Ecosystems (PDF)
- Silvicultural Decisions XI: Can Fire Hazard Deduction Treatments Help Achieve other Silvicultural Objectives? (PDF)
- Wildfire and Wildlife: Living in Fire-Based Ecosystems (PDF)
Your forest and/or rangelands burned — now what do you do? Learn how to return home safely, assess the post-fire condition of your forestland, and plan and conduct post-fire rehabilitation efforts.
- After the Burn: Assessing and Managing your Forestland after a Wildfire (SB 76) - long publication
- Salvage Logging (PDF)
- After the Burn: Assessing and Managing Your Forestland after a Wildfire (PDF) - article
- After the Fires: Hydrophobic Soils (PDF)
- Forest Fire Risk Reduction Alternatives for Slash (PDF)
- After the Burn: Assessing Postfire Forestland Conditions (PDF)
- eXtension Wildfire Information Network - Returning Home
- USDA Forest Service Burned Area Emergency Response: The Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) program is designed to address emergency situations through its key goals of protecting life, property, and critical natural and cultural resources.