These counties have a moderate population density and are bedroom communities to some of the smaller cities of the southeast. The counties include those in the hill country west of Austin and San Antonio, TX; near Tallahassee, FL, south of Ft. Myers, FL; north of Jacksonville, FL; and north of Oklahoma City, OK. The landscape is mixed with a history of fire. The private landowner plays a larger role than the state or federal government. Mechanical treatments will not be economically driven, as these locations lie outside of the “timber belt”. It is advantageous to have focus on local, strategically placed treatments. A good investment will be to focus on the prevention of ignitions to keep the fire from burning homes.

Example of a Typical County — Collier County, Florida: Wildfire is a regular occurrence here. This county includes Naples and Big Cypress National Preserve.

National Priorities

Vegetation and Fuels High
Homes, Communities and Values at Risk High
Human-Caused Ignitions Moderate
Effective and Efficient Response:
Counties in this combo have high risk to large wildfires and most counties have less potential for resource benefits than others.

Policy Options and Opportunities

Vegetation and Fuels
These counties have a history of prescribed fire and could expand or maintain use of this fuel management option. Many of these counties also have nearby forest products industries, so they may consider using mechanical treatments to create a buffer between the forest and the communities before using prescribed fire.

Homes, Communities and Values at Risk
Individual homeowners can be proactive on home defensive actions. Communities can plan and take coordinated action, in combination with individual actions by property owners. This can include the creation of buffers and strategic fuel breaks. These counties could adjust building and construction codes in municipal areas.

Human-Caused Ignitions
Human caused ignitions are a problem in these counties. Reduce accidental and human-caused ignitions through enforcement or outreach.

Effective and Efficient Wildfire Response
Prepare for large, long duration wildfires. Protect structures and target prevention of ignitions.

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