I Want To...

Probability of Ignition

  • IFT-Ignite

Fire Behavior

  • IFT-Crown
  • FCCS
  • IFT-Surface
  • IFT-FlamMap
  • Surface fire behavior, size, and spread distance

Fire Containment

  • IFT-Contain
  • IFT-Safety
  • IFT-Scorch
  • IFT-Size
  • IFT-Spot

Fire Effects

  • IFT-Consume
  • IFT-FOFEM

Burn Probability

  • IFT-Randig
  • IFT-FlamMap

Worst Case Flame Lengths

  • IFT-FlamMap+IFT-Randig
  • IFT-FlamMap

Flame Length Probabilities

  • IFT-FlamMap+IFT-Randig

There are two types of fuels treatments in fire management: Prescribed fire treatments and non-fire treatments (chemical treatments and mechanical treatments). Each of these treatments require different types of planning.

Prescribed Fire Treatments


Planning a prescribed fire treatment is more than writing a burn plan and implementing it. There are several steps one must take place before lighting the match.

Step 1: Where do you want to burn? 
Assess the landscape to evaluate where to apply the fuels project. Each agency has its own process for choosing where the project will occur. For example, the National Park Service requires each park with a Fire Management Plan to have a Multiyear Fuels Treatment Plan which outlines where projects will occur over the next five-seven years. The Forest Service focuses on fuels reduction in the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) and restoration in fire-adapted ecosystems to guide their decision process on where to burn. The Bureau of Land Management initiates a three-year planning cycle for prescribed fire treatments, however, projects can be initiated one year prior to implementation. Regardless of the agency, there are tools to assist you on determining the best place to burn.

Step 2: Compliance 
Once you’ve decided on where the project will occur, you will need to ensure all the compliance requirements with the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA), National Historical Preservation Act (NHPA), and the Endangered Species Act (ESA), have been completed for the project. Work with your local compliance coordinator or fire planner to ensure all requirements are met before finalizing your plan. See NEPA toolbox.

Step 3: Write the plan 
A prescribed fire burn plan must be written using the Interagency Prescribed Fire Planning and Implementation Procedures Guide (PMS 484) http://www.nwcg.gov/pms/RxFire/rx.htm.  The prescribed fire burn plan provides the Burn Boss with the information needed to implement the prescribed fire project. As you begin to write the burn plan, it is helpful to use planning documents such as the Fire Management Plan, Land/Resource Management Plan, and Environmental Compliance to assist with quality information and objectives for the prescribed fire project. The Interagency Fuels Treatment Decision Support System (IFTDSS) is a web-based software to assist you in developing burn plans, conducting risk assessments, and model fire behavior. 

IFTDSS Workflow


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Loading/Fuel Models

  • Acquired LANDFIRE Data

Determine priority areas on the landscape based on:

Fire Behavior

  • IFT-FlamMap
  • IFT-Minimum Travel Time (fire spread)
  • IFT-Spot
  • IFT-Crown

Probability of Ignition

Values at Risk

Potential Fire Effects

  • IFT-Consume
  • IFT-FOFEM

Other Fuels Treament (pruning, thinning, mowing, etc)

Step 1: What areas do you want to treat?
Assess the landscape to evaluate where to apply the fuels treatments. Each agency has its own process for choosing where the project will occur.  By running the models and workflows outlined below in IFTDSS, priority areas for treatment can be identified.

Step 2: Compliance
Once you’ve decided on where the project will occur, you will need to ensure all the compliance requirements with the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA), National Historical Preservation Act (NHPA), and the Endangered Species Act (ESA), have been completed for the project. Work with your local compliance coordinator or fire planner to ensure all requirements are met before finalizing your plan. See NEPA toolbox.

Step 3: Write the plan
Model outputs displayed at the end of each modeling run (Run Summary) can be exported to be analyzed in other programs. For many models, graphical representations can be downloaded straight from IFTDSS for inclusion into planning documents.

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IFTDSS Workflow


Loading/Fuels Models

  • Acquire LANDFIRE Data

Determine priority areas on the landscape based on:

Fire Behavior

  • IFT-FlamMap
  • IFT-Minimum Travel Time (fire spread)
  • IFT-Spot
  • IFT-Crown

Probability of Ignition

Values at Risk

Potential Fire Effects

  • IFT-Consume
  • IFT-FOFEM

Edit fire behavior fuel models to compare pre and post treatment areas

  • Fire behavior evaluated with IFT-FlamMap through the Fuels Treatment workflow

Save previous run data and re-run the following to compare Fire Behavior, Probability of Ignition, Values at Risk, or Fire Effects outlined above