Supporting wildfire management activities is frequently identified as a benefit of forestroads. As such, there is a growing body of research into forest road planning, construction, andmaintenance to improve fire surveillance, prevention, access, and control operations.
There is broad recognition that fire management in the United States must fundamentally change and depart from practices that have led to an over-emphasis on suppression and limited the presence of fire in forested ecosystems.
In the western United States and elsewhere, the need to change society’s relationship with wildfire is well-recognized. Suppressing fewer fires in fire-prone systems is promoted to escape existing feedback loops that lead to ever worsening conditions and increasing risks to responders and communities.
The impacts of wildfires have increased in recent decades because of historical forest and fire management, a rapidly changing climate, and an increasingly populated wildland urban interface. This increasingly complex fire environment highlights the importance of developing robust tools to support risk-informed decision making.
Risk management is being increasingly promoted as an appropriate method for addressing wildland fire management challenges. However, a lack of a common understanding of risk concepts and terminology is hindering effective application.