|Project Title: Upper Los Gatos Creek Fire Hazard Assessment
Client: San Jose Water Company
Location: Santa Clara County, California
The San Jose Water Company (SJWC) has commissioned a fire hazard assessment to design fuel modifications that change fire behavior within the Non-Industrial Timber Management Plan (NTMP) located in the Upper Los Gatos Creek Watershed. The primary purpose of this assessment was to quantify the wildfire hazard, determine how future management activities may affect fire behavior, and provide vegetation management recommendations. It was novel in that it was performed in a part of California that has received little attention from fire scientists as well as in its use of the best available geoscience including Light Detection And Ranging (LiDAR). A widely recognized fire model (FlamMap), LiDAR, and field parameterized inputs were used to generate fire behavior data that was compared across the NTMP landscape for a given set of weather and/or fuel moisture data inputs. TSS provided recommendations on the implementation and maintenance of mitigation measures needed to significantly reduce the exposure of the watershed’s assets and adjacent homes to losses from wildfire. This assessment was the first among several steps that the SJWC will perform in order to manage the potential long-term impacts of fire on its watershed lands.