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New tool allows people to see property's wildfire risk

The tool has address-specific information and also includes new data through modeling that shows an increased risk of fire danger across the entire country.

DENVER, Colorado — For the first time, people now have a chance to learn how high the fire risk is at the property where they live. 

The tool was created by the non-profit First Street Foundation, which created models and mapping based on data from governmental agencies and the Census. 

Nationwide, half of all addresses in the lower 48 states face some degree of wildfire risk. By 2022, 56% of all addresses will face some sort of threat. 

Based on the data, Colorado ranks as the 7th highest state in the country with the highest number of properties that have an increased risk for wildfires. Our state trails behind California, Texas, Florida, Arizona, Oklahoma and New Mexico for the highest risk to properties due to wildfires. 

The top 10 counties with the greatest number of at risk properties (considered at 0.03% risk using the modeling): 

1. El Paso - 200,100 properties
2. Douglas - 122,000 properties
3. Larimer - 82,100 properties
4. Arapahoe - 63,600 properties
5. Jefferson - 51,700
6. Boulder - 50,700
7. Adams - 44,100
8. Pueblo - 30,100
9. Weld - 29,100
10. La Plata - 26,300 

"On average, we see about a doubling of fire risk across the country. So places that are already high are just gonna get higher," said Jeremy Porter, chief research officer with the First Step Foundation. 

The tool is designed to offer some insight into the property where you live, in the same way that the FEMA flooding map allows homeowners to understand their flood risk. 

"There's really nothing like it on fire and wildfires becoming you know, as much of an issue, especially in certain parts of the country like the west as flooding. So the fact that it just doesn't exist in a public way for property owners was really what we were focused on," said Porter. 

Insurance experts said the modeling would not determine rates or prices because they do their own evaluations. 

If you would like to see what kind of risk your property is considered, click here.

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