Wildfires can result in significant social, environmental and economic losses. Fires in which dynamic fire behaviours (DFBs) occur contribute disproportionately to damage statistics. Little quantitative data on the frequency at which DFBs occur exists. To address this problem, we conducted a structured survey using staff from fire and land management agencies in Australia regarding their experiences with DFBs. Staff were asked which, if any, DFBs were observed within fires greater than 1000 ha from the period 2006-2016 that they had experience with. They were also asked about the nature of evidence to support these observations. One hundred thirteen fires were identified. Eighty of them had between one and seven DFBs with 73% (58 fires) having multiple types of DFBs. Most DFBs could commonly be identified through direct data, suggesting an empirical analysis of these phenomena should be possible. Spotting, crown fires and pyro-convective events were the most common DFBs (66%); when combined with eruptive fires and conflagrations, these DFBs comprise 89% of all cases with DFBs. Further research should be focused on these DFBs due to their high frequencies and the fact that quantitative data are likely to be available.
Filkov, Alexander I.; Duff, Thomas J.; Penman, Trent D. 2020. Frequency of dynamic fire behaviours in Australian forest environments. Fire 3(1):1. https://doi.org/10.3390/fire3010001