Next Issue
Volume 5, August
Previous Issue
Volume 5, April

Fire, Volume 5, Issue 3 (June 2022) – 29 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Mechanical mastication is a fuel management strategy that modifies vegetation structure to reduce the impact of wildfire. Our study sought to quantify changes to fuel loads and structure over time following mastication and as a function of landscape aridity. Sites had been masticated within the previous 9 years to remove over-abundant shrubs and small trees. Surface fuel loads were highest immediately post-mastication and in the most arid sites. Surface fine fuel loads declined over time, whereas surface coarse fuel loads remained high; these trends occurred irrespective of landscape aridity. Standing fuel regenerated consistently, but shrub cover was still substantially low at 9 years post-mastication. Fire managers need to consider the trade-off between a persistently higher surface coarse fuel load and reduced shrub cover to evaluate the efficacy of mastication for fuel management. View this paper
  • Issues are regarded as officially published after their release is announced to the table of contents alert mailing list.
  • You may sign up for e-mail alerts to receive table of contents of newly released issues.
  • PDF is the official format for papers published in both, html and pdf forms. To view the papers in pdf format, click on the "PDF Full-text" link, and use the free Adobe Readerexternal link to open them.
Order results
Result details
Section
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:
Article
Influence of Compartment Fire Behavior at Ignition and Combustion Development Stages on the Operation of Fire Detectors
Fire 2022, 5(3), 84; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030084 - 17 Jun 2022
Viewed by 401
Abstract
This paper presents experimental research findings for those involved in the early phase of fire in office buildings. Class A model fires with a reaction area from 5 cm2 to 300 cm2 were chosen for investigation. To mock up a fire, [...] Read more.
This paper presents experimental research findings for those involved in the early phase of fire in office buildings. Class A model fires with a reaction area from 5 cm2 to 300 cm2 were chosen for investigation. To mock up a fire, the following combustible materials typical of offices were used: wood pieces, heat-insulated linoleum, paper and cardboard. The main characteristics of a model fire were recorded: temperature in the combustion zone, heat release, time of complete burnout and concentration of flue gas components. Typical trends and histograms of changes of these characteristics over time were presented; stages of ignition, flame combustion and smoldering were illustrated. The key characteristics of fire detector activation at different stages of model fire combustion were analyzed. Dead bands and operation conditions of a group of detectors (smoke, heat, optical, flame), their response time and errors were identified. It has been established that the most effective detectors are flame and smoke detectors. Specific operational aspects of detectors were established when recording the ignition of different types of model fires. The viability of combining at least two detectors to record fire behavior was established. Recommendations were made on using the obtained findings when optimizing the systems for detecting and recording the start of a compartment fire. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Controlling Metal Fires through Cellulose Flake Blanketing Followed by Water Spray Cooling
Fire 2022, 5(3), 83; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030083 - 17 Jun 2022
Viewed by 414
Abstract
The traditional methods of fighting metal fires are not always safe for firefighters. The sand and salts that are thrown onto the fire to suffocate the flames can lead to splashes of molten metal, putting the firefighters and the surroundings at risk. A [...] Read more.
The traditional methods of fighting metal fires are not always safe for firefighters. The sand and salts that are thrown onto the fire to suffocate the flames can lead to splashes of molten metal, putting the firefighters and the surroundings at risk. A novel process is described where magnesium fires are brought under control using a simple two-step process. First, coated cellulose flakes, which contain approx. 30% inorganic salts, are blown onto the fire from a distance of several meters. Due to its low bulk density, the material settles smoothly on the fire and immediately covers the flames for several seconds. Before the hot metal can break through this cover, a fine water spray is applied to the fire. The water spray wets the top layer of the cellulose flakes, which will begin to char from the bottom. The water evaporates from within the cellulose flake layer and withdraws heat. It was observed that no hydrogen is formed and that this technique can safely control fires. It is judged that 90 kg of flakes could safely bring a pile of 75 kg of burning Mg flakes under control. By using a pneumatic conveying unit for the flakes, firefighters can effectively and efficiently cover the flames from a safe distance. This novel method could be recommended to firefighters in industrial magnesium processing plants, as well as local firefighters in the vicinity of such plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Fire and Combustion Safety)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Aided Phytoremediation in Fire-Affected Forest Soil
Fire 2022, 5(3), 82; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030082 - 15 Jun 2022
Viewed by 446
Abstract
Wildfires are occurring with an increasing frequency, and substances they generate can negatively affect the environment. A pot experiment with Lolium perrene was performed on burnt soil supplemented with organic (biochar, compost) and inorganic (NPK fertilizer) supplements and combinations of soil amendments in [...] Read more.
Wildfires are occurring with an increasing frequency, and substances they generate can negatively affect the environment. A pot experiment with Lolium perrene was performed on burnt soil supplemented with organic (biochar, compost) and inorganic (NPK fertilizer) supplements and combinations of soil amendments in order to assess the possibility of aided phytomanagement of fire-affected areas. Soil amendments affect more aboveground biomass growth than underground biomass growth. Organic amendment, biochar, and compost promoted aboveground biomass growth; however, they did not increase the bioconcentration of metal elements in the roots. Unamended burnt soil achieved the highest bioconcentration of metal elements in underground biomass, while it produced significantly less aboveground biomass than burnt soil amended with biochar and with compost. Based on the ash composition from this study, aided phytostabilization appears to be a suitable phytomanagement method, as the priority is to rapidly recover vegetation in order to prevent soil erosion. This study therefore recommends selecting a suitable phytoremediation method based on the composition of ash. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Fire Behaviour of Insulation Panels Commonly Used in High-Rise Buildings
Fire 2022, 5(3), 81; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030081 - 14 Jun 2022
Viewed by 464
Abstract
The energy efficiency of buildings drives the replacement of traditional construction materials with lightweight insulating materials. However, energy-efficient but combustible insulation might contribute to the building’s fire load. Therefore, it is necessary to analyse the reaction-to-fire properties of various insulating materials to provide [...] Read more.
The energy efficiency of buildings drives the replacement of traditional construction materials with lightweight insulating materials. However, energy-efficient but combustible insulation might contribute to the building’s fire load. Therefore, it is necessary to analyse the reaction-to-fire properties of various insulating materials to provide a better understanding of designing a fire-safe structure. In this study, reaction-to-fire tests were carried out to assess the fire behaviour of lightweight polystyrene insulating panels commonly employed in high-rise buildings. The flammability characteristics of expanded polystyrene (EPS) and extruded polystyrene (XPS) were determined using a cone calorimeter under two distinct external irradiance regimes, 35 kW/m2 and 50 kW/m2, to approximate small to medium fire exposure situations. To investigate the effect of a fire-rated (FR) foil layer on a sandwich panel, three distinct test configurations were used: (i) sample without FR layer (standard sample), (ii) sample with FR layer (FR foil), and (iii) damaged layer (foil and vent) for EPS. Except for the smoke toxicity index (STI), the overall fire performance of EPS is superior to that of XPS. The findings of this study are useful in analysing fire performance and fire safety design for lightweight insulation panels. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Incentives and Barriers to Homeowners’ Uptake of FireSmart® Canada’s Recommended Wildfire Mitigation Activities in the City of Fort McMurray, Alberta
Fire 2022, 5(3), 80; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030080 - 10 Jun 2022
Viewed by 517
Abstract
This paper presents the results of a survey that was undertaken to examine homeowners’ FireSmart mitigation practices and investigate existing incentives and barriers to uptake of FireSmart Canada’s recommended wildfire mitigation activities in the Urban Service Area of Fort McMurray Alberta. Single-family residential [...] Read more.
This paper presents the results of a survey that was undertaken to examine homeowners’ FireSmart mitigation practices and investigate existing incentives and barriers to uptake of FireSmart Canada’s recommended wildfire mitigation activities in the Urban Service Area of Fort McMurray Alberta. Single-family residential property owners, the large majority of whom were affected by the Horse River wildfire, were invited to participate in an online survey. A total of 496 surveys were completed, with a response rate of 38%. We found that most of the participants generally perceive a low to moderate wildfire risk to their properties: they felt there was a low chance of a catastrophic fire happening soon and/or ‘enough’ had already been done to reduce the immediate risk. Although about half of the participants searched for information about FireSmart, having information or knowledge of FireSmart did not translate into substantial adoption of recommended mitigation actions. Survey participants generally preferred and implemented more of the low-cost, low effort mitigation measures such as cutting grasses and cleaning debris, likely for reasons other than wildfire risk reduction. With regard to structural measures, we found asphalt shingles and vinyl siding were present on the majority of homes; although this was not a choice but was provided by the builder or on the home when it was purchased. Very few respondents were willing to replace their siding or roof––the cost was the single biggest factor. In addition, we identified several other factors as negatively influencing homeowners’ mitigation actions, including the tendency to shift responsibility to the municipal government and social pressure such as neighbors not being as proactive in completing FireSmart mitigation measures. Recommendations that may help promote positive wildfire mitigation behaviors are discussed. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Short-Term Vegetation Response to Bulldozed Fire Lines in Northern Great Plains Grasslands
Fire 2022, 5(3), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030079 - 10 Jun 2022
Viewed by 541
Abstract
A bulldozed fire line is a fire-suppression technique that limits fire movement by altering fuel continuity through vegetation removal and mineral soil exposure. The ecological impacts of a bulldozed fire line may exceed the effects of the fire itself through lasting changes in [...] Read more.
A bulldozed fire line is a fire-suppression technique that limits fire movement by altering fuel continuity through vegetation removal and mineral soil exposure. The ecological impacts of a bulldozed fire line may exceed the effects of the fire itself through lasting changes in the soil and vegetation properties; however, little research has been performed to quantify these impacts in grassland systems. In this study, we compared vegetation properties among burned, unburned, and bulldozed fire line conditions on two August 2012 grassland wildfires in Montana. Standing biomass, by growth form, was quantified in 2013 and 2014, and compared using a generalized linear model. Perennial grass production was significantly reduced, while annual grass and annual forb biomass increased in response to the fire line treatment. Shrub and total vegetation standing crop were reduced in response to the fire line in 2013; however, the treatment effects were diminished by 2014. The burned and unburned treatments were generally similar within two years post-fire. The loss of perennial grasses and invasion of competitive annual grasses such as cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum L.) may limit the vegetation recovery of the fire line and promote further invasion of annual grasses into these systems. The marginal impact of the fires on these plant communities suggests the need to limit the use of ad hoc bulldozed fire lines as a suppression activity. If a bulldozed fire line is constructed, we suggest limiting soil disturbance by restricting blade depth to remove only surface vegetation and restricting bulldozer use to flat slopes, even if working with the contour, and incorporating re-seeding as part of or immediately after fire line construction. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
The Application of Fire Behavior Modeling to Fuel Treatment Assessments at Army Garrison Camp Williams, Utah
Fire 2022, 5(3), 78; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030078 - 09 Jun 2022
Viewed by 705
Abstract
Large wildfires (>40 ha in size) occur about every three years within Army Garrison Camp Williams, located near South Jordan, Utah, USA. In 2010 and 2012, wildfires originating on the practice firing range burned beyond the camp’s boundaries into the adjacent wildland-urban interface [...] Read more.
Large wildfires (>40 ha in size) occur about every three years within Army Garrison Camp Williams, located near South Jordan, Utah, USA. In 2010 and 2012, wildfires originating on the practice firing range burned beyond the camp’s boundaries into the adjacent wildland-urban interface areas. The political and public reaction to these escaped fires was intense. Fire researchers at Utah State University were asked if a spatially organized system of fuel treatments could be developed to prevent such incidents in the future. We used a combination of empirically based guidelines and semi-physical fire modeling systems, coupled with climatological data, to make assessments of fire behavior potential for the sagebrush steppe vegetation/fuel types found in AGCW, that also considered slope steepness. The results suggested the need for removal of woody vegetation within 20 m of firebreaks and a minimum firebreak width of 8.0 m in grassland fuels. In stands of juniper, a canopy coverage of 25% or less is recommended. In Gambel oak stands along the northern boundary of the installation, a fuelbreak width of 60 m for secondary breaks (used for segmenting large areas of fuels) and 90 m for primary breaks (used for protecting urban development and valuable natural resources) is recommended. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Technical Forum for Fire Science Laboratory and Field Methods)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Forest Fragmentation and Fires in the Eastern Brazilian Amazon–Maranhão State, Brazil
Fire 2022, 5(3), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030077 - 05 Jun 2022
Viewed by 838
Abstract
Tropical forests provide essential environmental services to human well-being. In the world, Brazil has the largest continuous area of these forests. However, in the state of Maranhão, in the eastern Amazon, only 24% of the original forest cover remains. We integrated and analyzed [...] Read more.
Tropical forests provide essential environmental services to human well-being. In the world, Brazil has the largest continuous area of these forests. However, in the state of Maranhão, in the eastern Amazon, only 24% of the original forest cover remains. We integrated and analyzed active fires, burned area, land use and land cover, rainfall, and surface temperature datasets to understand forest fragmentation and forest fire dynamics from a remote sensing approach. We found that forest cover in the Maranhão Amazon region had a net reduction of 31,302 km2 between 1985 and 2017, with 63% of losses occurring in forest core areas. Forest edges extent was reduced by 38%, while the size of isolated forest patches increased by 239%. Forest fires impacted, on average, around 1031 ± 695 km2 year−1 of forest edges between 2003 and 2017, the equivalent of 60% of the total burned forest in this period. Our results demonstrated that forest fragmentation is an important factor controlling temporal and spatial variability of forest fires in the eastern Amazon region. Thus, both directly and indirectly, forest fragmentation can compromise biodiversity and carbon stocks in this Amazon region. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Vegetation Fires in South America)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Long-Term Response of Fuel to Mechanical Mastication in South-Eastern Australia
Fire 2022, 5(3), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030076 - 03 Jun 2022
Viewed by 747
Abstract
Mechanical mastication is a fuel management strategy that modifies vegetation structure to reduce the impact of wildfire. Although past research has quantified immediate changes to fuel post-mastication, few studies consider longer-term fuel trajectories and climatic drivers of this change. Our study sought to [...] Read more.
Mechanical mastication is a fuel management strategy that modifies vegetation structure to reduce the impact of wildfire. Although past research has quantified immediate changes to fuel post-mastication, few studies consider longer-term fuel trajectories and climatic drivers of this change. Our study sought to quantify changes to fuel loads and structure over time following mastication and as a function of landscape aridity. Measurements were made at 63 sites in Victoria, Australia. All sites had been masticated within the previous 9 years to remove over-abundant shrubs and small trees. We used generalised additive models to explore trends over time and along an aridity gradient. Surface fuel loads were highest immediately post-mastication and in the most arid sites. The surface fine fuel load declined over time, whereas the surface coarse fuel load remained high; these trends occurred irrespective of landscape aridity. Standing fuel (understorey and midstorey vegetation) regenerated consistently, but shrub cover was still substantially low at 9 years post-mastication. Fire managers need to consider the trade-off between a persistently higher surface coarse fuel load and reduced shrub cover to evaluate the efficacy of mastication for fuel management. Coarse fuel may increase soil heating and smoke emissions, but less shrub cover will likely moderate fire behaviour. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in the Measurement of Fuels and Fuel Properties)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
A Study of Fire Drone Extinguishing System in High-Rise Buildings
Fire 2022, 5(3), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030075 - 01 Jun 2022
Viewed by 679
Abstract
Firefighting in high-rise buildings remains a difficult problem in the world because fire extinguishing equipment and tactics have many deficiencies in dealing with such building fires, especially for buildings higher than 50 m. In the present study, the LY100 fire extinguishing system is [...] Read more.
Firefighting in high-rise buildings remains a difficult problem in the world because fire extinguishing equipment and tactics have many deficiencies in dealing with such building fires, especially for buildings higher than 50 m. In the present study, the LY100 fire extinguishing system is taken as an example to introduce the application of the fire drone in the fire control of high-rise buildings. The LY100 fire extinguishing system mainly contains the twin-rotor drone, high-pressure liquid fire extinguishing equipment, pressure fire extinguishing equipment, associated vehicle and extinguishing agent. The LY100 system can be deployed quickly and operated flexibly. Based on such advantages, the indoor fire, exterior thermal insulation layer fire and top platform fire of high-rise building can be extinguished in a timely manner with the LY100 system. In addition, four kinds of firefighting tactics are described in this paper, including one drone operation, double drone cooperative operation, three or more drone cooperative operations, and cooperating with the lifting fire truck. Finally, the experiments are presented to verify the spraying distance of the fire drone system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Building Fire Dynamics and Fire Evacuation)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Editorial
Fire Risk Assessment and Safety Management in Buildings and Urban Spaces—A New Section of Fire Journal
Fire 2022, 5(3), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030074 - 01 Jun 2022
Viewed by 658
Abstract
It is a great pleasure to assume the role of Editor-in-Chief for the “Fire Risk Assessment and Safety Management in Buildings and Urban Spaces” Section of Fire (https://www [...] Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Review
A Review of the Standard of Care Owed to Australian Firefighters from a Safety Perspective—The Differences between Academic Theory and Legal Obligations
Fire 2022, 5(3), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030073 - 31 May 2022
Viewed by 757
Abstract
Working in high consequence yet low frequency, events Australian fire service Incident Controllers are required to make critical decisions with limited information in time-poor environments, whilst balancing competing priorities and pressures, to successfully solve dynamic large-scale disaster situations involving dozens of personnel within [...] Read more.
Working in high consequence yet low frequency, events Australian fire service Incident Controllers are required to make critical decisions with limited information in time-poor environments, whilst balancing competing priorities and pressures, to successfully solve dynamic large-scale disaster situations involving dozens of personnel within the Incident Management Team, including of front-line responders from multiple jurisdictions. They must also do this within the boundaries of public and political expectations, industrial agreements, and the legal requirement to maintain a safe workplace for all workers, inclusive of volunteers. In addition to these operational objectives, fire services must also provide realistic training to prepare frontline staff, whilst satisfying legislative requirements to provide a safe workplace under legislation that does not distinguish between emergency services and routine business contexts. In order to explore this challenge, in this article we review the different safety standards expected through industrial and legal lenses, and contextualize the results to the firefighting environment in Australia. Whilst an academic argument may be presented that firefighting is a reasonably unique workplace which exposes workers to a higher level of harm than many other workplaces, and that certain levels of firefighter injury and even fatality are acceptable, no exception or distinction is provided for the firefighting context within the relevant safety legislation. Until such time that fire services adopt the legal interpretations and applications and develop true safety management systems as opposed to relying on “dynamic risk assessment” as a defendable position, the ability of fire services and individual Incident Controllers to demonstrate they have managed risk as so far as reasonably practicable will remain ultimately problematic from a legal perspective. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
A Simulation Study on the Smoke Control Effect with Different Smoke Exhaust Patterns and Longitudinal Air Supply for Ultra-Wide Tunnels
Fire 2022, 5(3), 72; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030072 - 30 May 2022
Viewed by 611
Abstract
This study was motivated by the lack of understanding of the smoke control effect on an ultra-wide tunnel fire, with different smoke exhaust patterns (sidewall and top exhaust patterns) and longitudinal air supply volume (0, 30%, 50%, 70%, and 90%). A full-scale ultra-wide [...] Read more.
This study was motivated by the lack of understanding of the smoke control effect on an ultra-wide tunnel fire, with different smoke exhaust patterns (sidewall and top exhaust patterns) and longitudinal air supply volume (0, 30%, 50%, 70%, and 90%). A full-scale ultra-wide tunnel model was constructed based on the FDS and the fire parameters were analyzed, such as the longitudinal spread distance of smoke, the smoke layer height and the temperature at safe height. In addition, the smoke exhaust efficiency was calculated based on the mass flux of CO2, and the smoke control effect with different smoke exhaust patterns and air supply volumes was compared. Results show that the smoke exhaust patterns and air supply ratios have a great influence on smoke spread distance and exhaust efficiency. The smoke spread distance is shortened by increasing the longitudinal air supply volume, and when the ratio of air supply volume to smoke exhaust volume is less than 50%, the top exhaust pattern can control the spread of smoke better with a smaller smoke spread distance. In addition, the height of the smoke layer is controlled above the safe height of 2 m under the top smoke exhaust, and the temperature at both ends of the tunnel (25 °C) is lower than that under the sidewall exhaust pattern (35 °C). The smoke exhaust efficiency was calculated based on the mass flow rate of CO2, and the exhaust efficiency of the top exhaust pattern (~70%) is significantly higher than that of the sidewall exhaust pattern (~55%). However, as the air supply volume increases, there is a reduced increase in the exhaust efficiency. Therefore, taking the economic cost into account, the air supply ratios of 30% and 50% are the best for top and sidewall exhaust patterns, respectively. The results of this work provide important information about smoke distribution characteristics in an ultra-wide tunnel fire and may guide its design of smoke exhaust. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advance in Tunnel Fire Research)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Optimization of Numerical Simulation Algorithm for Spontaneous Combustion in Goaf via a Compression Storage and Solution Method of Coefficient Matrix
Fire 2022, 5(3), 71; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030071 - 29 May 2022
Viewed by 668
Abstract
In coal mine engineering, numerical software is used to analyze the behavior of coal rock damage and fluid migration. The order of the coefficient matrix used in numerical calculations is increasing, and this increases the computation steps in obtaining the coefficient matrix solution. [...] Read more.
In coal mine engineering, numerical software is used to analyze the behavior of coal rock damage and fluid migration. The order of the coefficient matrix used in numerical calculations is increasing, and this increases the computation steps in obtaining the coefficient matrix solution. The storage and solution of the coefficient matrix are key factors influencing the efficiency of the numerical software. Therefore, to save storage space and reduce the computation steps, the coefficient matrix must be effectively compressed and stored. In this work, the structural characteristics of different coefficient matrices are analyzed in detail, and we find that for different computational regions, as long as the nodes are numbered according to certain rules, the corresponding coefficient matrices will have similar structural characteristics. The nonzero elements are symmetrically distributed in the diagonal band, and all the elements on both sides outside the band are zero. Based on this, the coefficient matrix is compressed by a pivoting scheme, and the compressed matrix is directly eliminated by dislocation Gaussian elimination. Thus, a compressed storage method that integrates the compression and solution of the coefficient matrix is established. The compressed storage and calculation module is incorporated into our self-developed simulation software COMBUSS-3D to simulate the evolution of the temperature field in the goaf of Luling Coal Mine. Compared with the conventional method, the compressed storage module can significantly improve the computing rate of the simulation, by approximately 80%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mine Fires and Explosions)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Phenology Patterns and Postfire Vegetation Regeneration in the Chiquitania Region of Bolivia Using Sentinel-2
Fire 2022, 5(3), 70; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030070 - 28 May 2022
Viewed by 714
Abstract
The natural regeneration of ecosystems impacted by fires is a high priority in Bolivia, and represents one of the country’s greatest environmental challenges. With the abundance of spatial data and access to improved technologies, it is critical to provide an effective method of [...] Read more.
The natural regeneration of ecosystems impacted by fires is a high priority in Bolivia, and represents one of the country’s greatest environmental challenges. With the abundance of spatial data and access to improved technologies, it is critical to provide an effective method of analysis to evaluate changes in land use in the face of the global need to understand the dynamics of vegetation in regeneration processes. In this context, we evaluated the dynamics of natural regeneration through phenological patterns by measuring the maximal and minimal spectral thresholds at four fire-impacted sites in Chiquitania in 2019 and 2020, and compared them with unburned areas using harmonic fitted values of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and the Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR). We used two-way ANOVA test to evaluate the significant differences in the values of the profiles of NDVI and NBR indices. We quantified severity at the four study sites using the dNBR obtained from the difference between pre- and postfire NBR. Additionally, we selected 66 sampling sites to apply the Composite Burn Index (CBI) methodology. Our results indicate that NBR is the most reliable index for interannual comparisons and determining changes in the phenological pattern, which allow for the detection of postfire regeneration. Fire severity levels based on dNBR and CBI indices are reliable methodologies that allow for determining the severity and dynamics of changes in postfire regeneration levels in forested and nonforested areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Forest Fire Behaviour Modelling Using Remote Sensing)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
An Explorative Methodology to Assess the Risk of Fire and Human Fatalities in a Subway Station Using Fire Dynamics Simulator (FDS)
Fire 2022, 5(3), 69; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030069 - 25 May 2022
Viewed by 763
Abstract
Subway transportation is one of the most prevalent urban transportation methods globally. Millions of people around the globe use this medium as their mode of transportation daily. However, subway stations may be highly prone to fire, smoke, or explosion accidents. The safety of [...] Read more.
Subway transportation is one of the most prevalent urban transportation methods globally. Millions of people around the globe use this medium as their mode of transportation daily. However, subway stations may be highly prone to fire, smoke, or explosion accidents. The safety of people using subway stations demands a robust and practical framework to assess fire hazards and risks. This study provides a methodology to assess fire risk at a subway station. This study integrates fault tree analysis (FTA) and fuzzy analysis to conduct a comprehensive fire risk assessment. An integrated numerical model of fire temperature and fatality rate was developed using probit correlations for various fire exposure scenarios. The fire dynamics simulator (FDS) provides the probability distribution of casualties caused by fire. To demonstrate the operationalization of the model, Line 1 of the Harbin Metro, located in China, is used as a case study. Results show a probability of 42% of having fire risk in the subway station. Results reveal the highest fatality rate is 6.2% when evacuation time exceeds 200 s. The research helps us to understand the spread of smoke and temperature distribution due to a fire in a subway station. This study is helpful for fire protection engineers, safety managers, and local fire departments to develop a contingency plan to deal with fire in a subway station. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Building Fire Dynamics and Fire Evacuation)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Characterization of Wildfires and Harvesting Forest Disturbances and Recovery Using Landsat Time Series: A Case Study in Mediterranean Forests in Central Italy
Fire 2022, 5(3), 68; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030068 - 24 May 2022
Viewed by 764
Abstract
Large-scale forest monitoring benefits greatly from change detection analysis based on remote sensing data because it enables characterizing forest dynamics of disturbance and recovery by detecting both gradual and abrupt changes on Earth’s surface. In this study, two of the main disturbances occurring [...] Read more.
Large-scale forest monitoring benefits greatly from change detection analysis based on remote sensing data because it enables characterizing forest dynamics of disturbance and recovery by detecting both gradual and abrupt changes on Earth’s surface. In this study, two of the main disturbances occurring in Mediterranean forests, harvesting operations and forest fires, were analyzed through the analysis of Landsat Times Series images in a case study in Central Italy (Tuscany region). Disturbances were characterized based on their distinct temporal behaviors before and after the event: a period of 20 years (1999–2018) was used to extract and analyze at pixel level spectral trajectories for each disturbance and produce descriptive temporal trends of the phenomena. Recovery metrics were used to characterize both short- (5 years) and long-term aspects of recovery for harvested and burned areas. Spectral, recovery, and trend analysis metrics were then used with the Random Forest classifier to differentiate between the two disturbance classes and to investigate their potential as predictors. Among spectral bands, the Landsat SWIR 1 band proved the best to detect areas interested by harvesting, while forest fires were better detected by the SWIR 2 band; among spectral indices, the NBR scored as the best for both classes. On average, harvested areas recovered faster in both short- and long-term aspects and showed less variability in the magnitude of the disturbance event and recovery rate over time. This tendency is confirmed by the results of the classifier, which obtained an overall accuracy of 98.6%, and identified the mean of the post-disturbance values of the trend as the best predictor to differentiate between disturbances. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mediterranean Fires)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Investigation of Spontaneous Combustion Zones and Index Gas Prediction System in Goaf of “Isolated Island” Working Face
Fire 2022, 5(3), 67; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030067 - 14 May 2022
Viewed by 875
Abstract
Studies show that accurate division of spontaneous combustion (SC) zones in the goaf and the determination of the prediction system of the SC index are of great significance to prevent spontaneous and unwanted combustions in the goaf. Aiming at resolving the problem of [...] Read more.
Studies show that accurate division of spontaneous combustion (SC) zones in the goaf and the determination of the prediction system of the SC index are of great significance to prevent spontaneous and unwanted combustions in the goaf. Aiming at resolving the problem of coal SC in the goaf of an “isolated-island” fully mechanized caving face, a multiphysics model coupled with gas flow field and gas concentration field was established in the present study. Taking the 8824 working face of Nanzhuang coal mine as the research object and the oxygen concentration as the division index, coal SC was simulated in the goaf. The obtained results show that the ranges of heat dissipation zone, oxidation zone, and the asphyxia zone on the air inlet side are around 0–107 m, 107–239 m, and beyond 239 m, respectively. Moreover, the ranges of the three zones on the return air side are 0–13 m, 13–189 m, and beyond 189 m, respectively. The ranges of the three zones in the middle of goaf are 0–52 m, 52–213 m, and beyond 213 m, respectively. The performed analyses demonstrate that the obtained simulation results are consistent with the experimental data. Meanwhile, the coal programmed temperature rise experiment was carried out to improve the prediction index gas system of SC. It was found that CO and C2H4 can be used as early warning indices of SC in the goaf, while C2H6, C3H8, and C2H4/C2H6 are auxiliary indices to master the coal SC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mine Fires and Explosions)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Effects of the Severity of Wildfires on Some Physical-Chemical Soil Properties in a Humid Montane Scrublands Ecosystem in Southern Ecuador
Fire 2022, 5(3), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030066 - 13 May 2022
Viewed by 1026
Abstract
Humid montane scrublands (HMs) represent one of the least studied ecosystems in Ecuador, which in the last decade have been seriously threatened by the increase in wildfires. Our main objective was to evaluate the effects of wildfire severity on physicochemical soil properties in [...] Read more.
Humid montane scrublands (HMs) represent one of the least studied ecosystems in Ecuador, which in the last decade have been seriously threatened by the increase in wildfires. Our main objective was to evaluate the effects of wildfire severity on physicochemical soil properties in the HMs of southern Ecuador. For this purpose, fire severity was measured using the Normalized Burn Ratio (NBR) and the difference between pre-fire and post-fire (NBR Pre-fire-NBR Post-fire) over three contrasted periods (years 2019, 2017, and 2015) was determined. Likewise, 72 soil samples from burned HMs and 72 soil samples from unburned HMs were collected at a depth of 0 to 10 cm, and some physical (bulk density and texture) and biochemical (pH, soil organic matter, and total nutrients) soil properties were analyzed and statistically processed by one-way ANOVA and principal component analysis (PCA). Results indicate that burned HMs showed mixed-severity burning patterns and that in the most recent wildfires that are of high severity, SOM, N, P, Cu, and Zn contents decreased drastically (PCA: component 1); in addition, there was an increase in soil compaction (PCA: component 2). However, in older wildfires, total SOM, N, P, K, and soil pH content increases with time compared even to HMs that never burned (p-value < 0.05). These results can help decision makers in the design of policies, regulations, and proposals for the environmental restoration of HMs in southern Ecuador affected by wildfires. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Vegetation Fires in South America)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Prevention Technology of Coal Spontaneous Combustion Induced by Gas Drainage in Deep Coal Seam Mining
Fire 2022, 5(3), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030065 - 12 May 2022
Viewed by 823
Abstract
Due to high gas content and a low permeability coefficient in deep coal seam mining, the spontaneous combustion of coal around the wellbore can easily occur, leading to difficulties in extracting gas during the mining process. To determine the dangerous area around the [...] Read more.
Due to high gas content and a low permeability coefficient in deep coal seam mining, the spontaneous combustion of coal around the wellbore can easily occur, leading to difficulties in extracting gas during the mining process. To determine the dangerous area around the borehole and conduct advanced prevention and control measures are the keys to preventing spontaneous combustion in boreholes. However, the dangerous area around the borehole is not clear, the sealing parameters lack scientific basis, and the key prevention and control measures are not clear, which have caused great harm to coal mines. This study took the 24,130 working face of Pingdingshan No. 10 Mine as an example, using numerical simulation, theoretical analysis, and field tests to classify the risks of studying the surrounding area of the wellbore. The dangerous area variations under different lengths of shotcrete in the roadway were analyzed, the optimal plugging parameters were studied, and the current “two plugs and one injection” plugging device was optimized. Based on the oxygen concentration and air leakage rate, a method was proposed to divide the dangerous area of fissure coal spontaneous combustion around the borehole induced by gas extraction. The dangerous area of spontaneous combustion around the borehole was defined as having an oxygen concentration larger than 7% and an air leakage rate less than 0.004 m/s. The comprehensive control measures of the grouting length at 2–4 m, hole-sealing parameter at 20-13 (hole-sealing depth 20 m, hole-sealing length 13 m) and the “two plugs, one injection and one row” device were determined. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mine Fires and Explosions)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Combining Regulatory Instruments and Low-Cost Sensors to Quantify the Effects of 2020 California Wildfires on PM2.5 in San Joaquin Valley
Fire 2022, 5(3), 64; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030064 - 12 May 2022
Viewed by 1215
Abstract
The San Joaquin Valley in California has some of the worst air quality conditions in the nation, affected by a variety of pollution sources including wildfires. Although wildfires are part of the regional ecology, recent increases in wildfire activity may pose increased risk [...] Read more.
The San Joaquin Valley in California has some of the worst air quality conditions in the nation, affected by a variety of pollution sources including wildfires. Although wildfires are part of the regional ecology, recent increases in wildfire activity may pose increased risk to people and the environment. The 2020 wildfire season in California included the largest wildfires reported to date and resulted in poor air quality across the state. In this study, we looked at the air quality effects of these wildfires in the San Joaquin Valley area. We determined that four wildfires (LNU Lightning Complex, SCU Lightning Complex, Creek, and Castle) were primarily affecting the air quality in the area. The daily PM2.5 emissions from each one of these wildfires were estimated and the largest daily emissions, 1935 ton/day, were caused by the Creek fire. To analyze the air quality in the study area, we developed a method utilizing a combination of regulatory and low-cost sensor data to estimate the daily PM2.5 concentration levels at 5 km spatial resolution. The concentrations maps showed that the highest average concentration levels were reached on 17 September with an average of 130 μg/m3 when about one-fifth of the study area was affected by hazardous PM2.5 levels. A sensitivity study of our interpolation method showed that the addition of low-cost sensors to regulatory data improved the performance of area-wide concentration estimates and reduced the mean absolute error and the root mean square error by more than 20%. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
A Protection for LPG Domestic Cylinders at Wildland-Urban Interface Fire
Fire 2022, 5(3), 63; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030063 - 30 Apr 2022
Viewed by 1073
Abstract
Wildland fires are frequent events worldwide, particularly in the European-Mediterranean region, USA, and Australia. These fires have been more frequent and intense in recent years due to climate changes and may cause significant damage, especially when reaching the Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) areas. The [...] Read more.
Wildland fires are frequent events worldwide, particularly in the European-Mediterranean region, USA, and Australia. These fires have been more frequent and intense in recent years due to climate changes and may cause significant damage, especially when reaching the Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) areas. The presence of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders may cause severe events in WUI areas, as occurred in Portugal during the large wildfires of 2017, which could have been avoided if the cylinders were protected. Devices for protecting the parts of houses under WUI fire were previously presented, but a protective device for cylinders was not. In this work, a protective device for LPG cylinders made with a thin fabric with an aluminum coating on the external face was tested in laboratory and field conditions. The cylinder and the fabric were equipped with thermocouples and heat flux sensors attached to their surfaces. The tests showed that the device gave effective protection to the cylinder, decreasing the radiative heat flux that reaches it and keeping it in a safe condition when exposed to a fire; consequently preventing extreme behavior such as an explosion. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fire in Human Landscapes)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
A Field Study of Tropical Peat Fire Behaviour and Associated Carbon Emissions
Fire 2022, 5(3), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030062 - 29 Apr 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1228
Abstract
Tropical peatlands store vast volumes of carbon belowground. Human land uses have led to their degradation, reducing their carbon storage services. Clearing and drainage make peatlands susceptible to surface and belowground fires. Satellites do not readily detect smouldering peat fires, which release globally [...] Read more.
Tropical peatlands store vast volumes of carbon belowground. Human land uses have led to their degradation, reducing their carbon storage services. Clearing and drainage make peatlands susceptible to surface and belowground fires. Satellites do not readily detect smouldering peat fires, which release globally significant quantities of aerosols and climate-influencing gases. Despite national and international desire to improve management of these fires, few published results exist for in situ tropical peat fire behaviour and associated carbon emissions. We present new field methodology for calculating rates of fire spread within degraded peat (average spread rates, vertical 0.8 cm h−1, horizontal 2.7 cm h−1) and associated peat volume losses (102 m3 ha−1 in August, 754 m3 ha−1 in September) measured at six peat fire sites in Kalimantan, Indonesia, in 2015. Utilizing locally collected bulk density and emission factors, total August and September gas emissions of 27.2 t ha−1 (8.1 tC ha−1) and 200.7 t ha−1 (60.2 tC ha−1) were estimated. We provide much needed, but currently lacking, IPCC Tier 3-level data to improve GHG estimates from tropical peat fires. We demonstrate how calculations of total emission estimates can vary greatly in magnitude (+798% to −26%) depending on environmental conditions, season, peat burn depth methodology, bulk density and emission factors data sources, and assumed versus observed combustion factors. This illustrates the importance of in situ measurements and the need for more refined methods to improve accuracies of GHG estimates from tropical peat fires. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Reducing Rural Fire Risk through the Development of a Sustainable Supply Chain Model for Residual Agroforestry Biomass Supported in a Web Platform: A Case Study in Portugal Central Region with the Project BioAgroFloRes
Fire 2022, 5(3), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030061 - 29 Apr 2022
Viewed by 1045
Abstract
In the European Mediterranean region, rural fires are a widely known problem that cause serious socio-economic losses and undesirable environmental consequences, including the loss of lives, infrastructures, cultural heritage, and ecosystem services such as carbon sequestration and the provisioning of raw materials. In [...] Read more.
In the European Mediterranean region, rural fires are a widely known problem that cause serious socio-economic losses and undesirable environmental consequences, including the loss of lives, infrastructures, cultural heritage, and ecosystem services such as carbon sequestration and the provisioning of raw materials. In the last decades, the collapse of the traditional rural socioeconomic systems that once characterized the Mediterranean region, along with land-use changes, have created conflicts and additional driving factors for rural fires. Within Europe, Portugal is the most affected country by rural fires. This work intends to demonstrate the importance of recovering and valorizing residual agroforestry biomass to reduce rural fire risk in Portugal, and thus contributing to a fire resilient landscape. From the results of the known causes of fires in Portugal, it becomes very clear that it is crucial to educate people to end risky behaviors, such as the burning of agroforestry leftovers that causes 27% of fires in Portugal each year. The valorization of the existing energy potential in the lignocellulosic biomass of agroforestry residues favors the reduction of the probability of rural fires, this being the focus of the project BioAgroFloRes—Sustainable Supply Chain Model for Residual Agroforestry Biomass supported in a Web Platform—introduced and explained here. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Review
A Survey on Monitoring of Wild Animals during Fires Using Drones
Fire 2022, 5(3), 60; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030060 - 29 Apr 2022
Viewed by 1101
Abstract
Forest fires occur for natural and anthropogenic reasons and affect the distribution, structure, and functioning of terrestrial ecosystems worldwide. Monitoring fires and their impacts on ecosystems is an essential prerequisite for effectively managing this widespread environmental problem. With the development of information technologies, [...] Read more.
Forest fires occur for natural and anthropogenic reasons and affect the distribution, structure, and functioning of terrestrial ecosystems worldwide. Monitoring fires and their impacts on ecosystems is an essential prerequisite for effectively managing this widespread environmental problem. With the development of information technologies, unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) are becoming increasingly important in remote monitoring the environment. One of the main applications of drone technology related to nature monitoring is the observation of wild animals. Unmanned aerial vehicles are thought to be the best solution for detecting forest fires. There are methods for detecting wildfires using drones with fire- and/or smoke-detection equipment. This review aims to study the possibility of using drones for monitoring large animals during fires. It was established that in order to use unmanned aerial vehicles to monitor even small groups of wild animals during forest fires, effective unmanned remote sensing technologies in critical temperature conditions are required, which can be provided not only by the sensors used, but also by adapted software for image recognition. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Fire Science Models, Remote Sensing, and Data)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Mapping Fine-Scale Crown Scorch in 3D with Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems
Fire 2022, 5(3), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030059 - 29 Apr 2022
Viewed by 1130
Abstract
Remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) are providing fresh perspectives for the remote sensing of fire. One opportunity is mapping tree crown scorch following fires, which can support science and management. This proof-of-concept shows that crown scorch is distinguishable from uninjured canopy in point [...] Read more.
Remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) are providing fresh perspectives for the remote sensing of fire. One opportunity is mapping tree crown scorch following fires, which can support science and management. This proof-of-concept shows that crown scorch is distinguishable from uninjured canopy in point clouds derived from low-cost RGB and calibrated RGB-NIR cameras at fine resolutions (centimeter level). The Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) provided the most discriminatory spectral data, but a low-cost RGB camera provided useful data as well. Scorch heights from the point cloud closely matched field measurements with a mean absolute error of 0.52 m (n = 29). Voxelization of the point cloud, using a simple threshold NDVI classification as an example, provides a suitable dataset worthy of application and further research. Field-measured scorch heights also showed a relationship to RPAS-thermal-camera-derived fire radiative energy density (FRED) estimates with a Spearman rank correlation of 0.43, but there are many issues still to resolve before robust inference is possible. Mapping fine-scale scorch in 3D with RPAS and SfM photogrammetry is a viable, low-cost option that can support related science and management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Fire Science Models, Remote Sensing, and Data)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Weather Research and Forecasting—Fire Simulated Burned Area and Propagation Direction Sensitivity to Initiation Point Location and Time
Fire 2022, 5(3), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030058 - 28 Apr 2022
Viewed by 1127
Abstract
Wildland fire behavior models are often initiated using the detection information listed in incident reports. This information carries an unknown amount of uncertainty, though it is often the most readily available ignition data. To determine the extent to which the use of detection [...] Read more.
Wildland fire behavior models are often initiated using the detection information listed in incident reports. This information carries an unknown amount of uncertainty, though it is often the most readily available ignition data. To determine the extent to which the use of detection information affects wildland fire forecasts, this research examines the range of burned area values and propagation directions resulting from different initiation point locations and times. We examined the forecasts for ten Colorado 2018 wildland fire case studies, each initiated from a set of 17 different point locations, and three different starting times (a total of 520 case study simulations). The results show that the range of forecast burned area and propagation direction values is strongly affected by the location of the initiation location, and to a lesser degree by the time of initiation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Fire Science Models, Remote Sensing, and Data)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Experimental Study of the Source of CO Anomalies in Mines Based on Microscopic Changes
Fire 2022, 5(3), 57; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030057 - 25 Apr 2022
Viewed by 986
Abstract
The phenomenon of abnormal CO emergence occurred in a working face of Tangshan mine, and the CO source was analyzed from the two perspectives of CO detection method optimization and microstructure changes in the low-temperature environment of the coal body. Then, the critical [...] Read more.
The phenomenon of abnormal CO emergence occurred in a working face of Tangshan mine, and the CO source was analyzed from the two perspectives of CO detection method optimization and microstructure changes in the low-temperature environment of the coal body. Then, the critical index system was optimized. The CO identification tube test results and gas chromatograph test results are combined to derive a fitting formula, and the CO identification tube test results are used as the independent variable to obtain the gas chromatograph test results, which can effectively eliminate the error of small CO identification tube test results. The analysis of raw coal and coal samples heated by water bath at 30 °C, 40 °C, and 50 °C was carried out using low temperature liquid nitrogen adsorption and thermogravimetric and infrared spectroscopy experiments. It was found that the pore structure of the coal body developed as the temperature increased; the oxidation reaction occurred in the low-temperature state when heat was absorbed to produce CO. The thermal decomposition of carbonyl group was found to be the main source of CO. Finally, the index of spontaneous combustion of coal is optimized according to the temperature, and the index systems represented by O2/(CO2+CO), CH4 and CO2/CO were determined from 30~80 °C, 90~180 °C and 18~240 °C, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mine Fires and Explosions)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Reply
Reply to Giglio et al. Comment on “Otón et al. Analysis of Trends in the FireCCI Global Long Term Burned Area Product (1982–2018). Fire 2021, 4, 74”
Fire 2022, 5(3), 56; https://doi.org/10.3390/fire5030056 - 20 Apr 2022
Viewed by 1000
Abstract
First of all, we would like to thank the authors of the comment [...] Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Previous Issue
Next Issue
Back to TopTop