Verisk 2015 Wildfire Risk Analysis: More Than 2 Million California Homes at Risk as Drought Continues

JERSEY CITY, N.J., June 10, 2015 — Verisk Insurance Solutions, a leading source of information about property/casualty insurance risk, has released its 2015 FireLine State Risk Reports, which summarize wildfire risk in 13 wildfire-prone states. Three new states — Montana, Oklahoma, and Wyoming — are included in this year’s analysis. Verisk Insurance Solutions is a Verisk Analytics (Nasdaq:VRSK) business.

Key findings from the analysis include the following:

  • There are 4.5 million U.S. homes at high or extreme risk of wildfire.
  • California ranks first for the highest number of households at high or extreme risk with just over 2 million — approximately three times the second highest, Texas, with 706,200.
  • The states with the highest percentage of households at high or extreme risk of wildfire are Montana (27 percent) and Idaho (25 percent).
  • Colorado ranks third in terms of both number and percentage of households at high or extreme risk.

“Worsening drought conditions in the western states indicate that 2015 has the potential to be one of the most devastating wildfire seasons on record. The number of wildfires in California alone in the first five months of 2015 is up 54 percent over the five-year average for the same time period, says Neil Spector, president, Underwriting, Verisk Insurance Solutions. “It’s more important than ever for insurers to be prepared and manage their wildfire risk effectively.”

The reports are produced using data from FireLine™, Verisk’s wildfire risk management service.  FireLine — powered by Verisk Climate technology — helps insurers assess wildfire risk at the address level. The service uses advanced remote sensing and digital mapping technology to determine the impact of three factors that contribute to wildfire risk: fuel, slope, and access. FireLine also identifies properties located in Special Hazard Interface Areas for risks exposed to wind-borne embers.

The FireLine State Risk Reports provide snapshot views of the wildfire risk in each FireLine state. The reports include:

  • wildfire risk at a glance
  • FireLine wildfire hazard map
  • percentage and number of housing units at high, medium, and low wildfire risk
  • top five counties by number of housing units and highest concentration of high and extreme wildfire risk

The Verisk 2015 FireLine State Risk Reports can be accessed at

FireLine is part of the LOCATION® suite of property products that provide accurate, essential data on every U.S. property to help insurers assess risk effectively and make sound underwriting decisions.

About Verisk Insurance Solutions
A Verisk Analytics (Nasdaq:VRSK) business, Verisk Insurance Solutions is a leading source of information about property/casualty insurance risk. Drawing upon vast experience in data management, security, and predictive modeling to serve its clients, Verisk Insurance Solutions includes the industry-leading brands of ISO, AIR Worldwide, and Xactware. In the United States and around the world, Verisk Insurance Solutions helps customers protect people, property, and financial assets. For more information, visit

Giuseppe Barone/Colleen Finley
MWW Group (for ISO)

Archived Press