A system for predicting fire behavior in Canadian forests
Document Type: Conference Proceedings
Author(s): Bruce D. Lawson; Brian J. Stocks; Martin E. Alexander; Charles E. Van Wagner
Publication Year: 1985

Cataloging Information

  • Canada
  • CFFDRS - Canadian Forest Fire Danger Rating System
  • FBP - CFFDRS Fire Behavior Prediction System
  • fire danger rating
  • fire potential
  • fireline intensity
  • fuel consumption
  • ISI - CFFDRS Initial Spread Index
  • ROS - rate of spread
  • International
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Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: June 1, 2018
FRAMES Record Number: 10927
Tall Timbers Record Number: 1879
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Abstract Status: Okay, Fair use, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.


The Canadian Forest Fire Danger Rating System (CFFDRS) consists of two major sub-systems. The Canadian Forest Fire Weather Index (FWI) System provides numerical ratings of relative fire potential in a standard fuel type, based solely on weather observations. The other major sub-system of the CFFDRS, the Canadian Forest Fire Behavior Prediction (FBP) System, consists of three components as primary outputs: rate of spread. fuel consumption. and line- or frontal fire intensity. An interim version of the rate of spread (ROS) component was produced in 1984 and is described here. The principal input variable is the Initial Spread Index (ISI), a component of the FWI System. Head fire ROS/ISI equations were developed for 14 major Canadian fuel types from a data base consisting of 245 experimental/operational prescribed fire and 45 wildfire observations. Procedures for projecting fire growth are illustrated using a documented wildfire example.

Online Link(s):
Lawson, B. D.; Stocks, B. J.; Alexander, M. E.; Van Wagner, C. E. 1985. A system for predicting fire behavior in Canadian forests. Pages 6-16 in Proceedings of the 8th Conference on Fire and Forest Meteorology, April 29-May 2, 1985, Detroit, MI. Bethesda, MD: Society of American Foresters.