22 - GEOL 0820 Ramsey Natural Disasters Spring, 2011...

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GEOL 0820 Ramsey Natural Disasters Spring, 2011 LECTURE #22: Wild Fires: The Science of Fire Date: 14 April 2011 I. Wild Fires very important hazard to understand! one of the largest and most expensive hazards o in the United States and around the world average death rate: o ~ 4,200 deaths/year in the US (over the last 10 years) average cost: o ~15 – 18 billion dollars/year in the US (just to structures!) natural causes (lightning) account for only 15 - 20% of all fires National Interagency Fire Center: o http://www.nifc.gov/ wildfire statistics from 2009 o number of fires: 78,792 ± 10-year average (1993-2002): 101,575 o acres burned: 5,921,786 ± 10-year average (1993-2002): 4,663,081 o structures burned: 4,090 buildings o estimated cost of fire suppression ± federal agencies only: $1.3 billion II. History of Large US Fires Miramichi Fire o October 1825 (Maine & New Brunswick) ± among the worst wildfires in North American history ¾ burned 3 million acres ¾ killed 160 people ¾ left 15,000 homeless Hinckley Fire o September, 1894 (Hinckley, Minnesota) o burned more 350,000 acres o killing 418 people Page 1/5
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Great Fire of 1910 o Idaho and Montana o small blazes plus hurricane-force winds and dry forests combined o killed 86 people o burned about 3 million acres
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This note was uploaded on 01/05/2012 for the course GEOL 0820 taught by Professor Ramsay during the Spring '08 term at Pittsburgh.

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22 - GEOL 0820 Ramsey Natural Disasters Spring, 2011...

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