Rural Fire Research

Rural Fire Research

Rural Fire Research

Thanks to SCION Research for the information provided on this page.

Click on the SCION logo above to take you to the SCION Rural Fire Research Group website.

Scion’s Rural Fire Research Group is New Zealand's only provider of specialist fire research expertise in rural and forest landscapes. Scion develop’s the science and technology needed to protect life and property, and to manage fire in the landscape.

Understanding how fires are likely to behave in different weather conditions, terrain and fuel types, and the factors affecting public and firefighter safety is essential to fire management and prevention.

Over the past 17 years Scion has developed a range of tools and guidelines now widely used by fire managers in making effective decisions regarding firefighter and community safety.

We also work closely with bushfire researchers at CSIRO in Australia to provide world-class support for fire management agencies.

What’s New in Rural Fire Research – January 2015

SCION have several publications, and web links to media releases available from their website Alternatively, click on the underlined subjects below for direct download, or visit our what’s new page.

Research highlights:

A copy of the research team’s activities for June – September 2014 is available.  Click here to view the activities [4pg PDF, 2.6Mb]

Rural Fire Research publications:

Effective communication of wildfire messages for New Zealand communities. Fttn #43.

Click here to view the Fire Technology Transfer Note  [12pg PDF, 410kb]

This Fire Technology Transfer Note summarises a report on communication strategies in three rural and rural-urban interface communities. The researchers were able to recommend a new way for agencies to plan and implement future communication of fire messages. 

NZ Fire Behaviour Toolkit (version 2.2)

This version incorporates an electronic version of the Guide to New Zealand Fuels. This is a technical guide for selecting the most appropriate fuel type for fire behaviour predictions. It  provides users with a better understanding of how the fire behaviour models differ from one another, and will therefore aid in making the correct selection for fire behaviour predictions

The PC-based Toolkit is available from the Scion website.

The Fire Behaviour Toolkit is also available as an App for both Android and Apple systems.

Check out the Fire Behaviour Toolkit App. here

Media releases:

What do Fire Danger Signs Mean (Jan. 2015)

Summertime and the living is easy, fish are jumping and the fire danger is high. But what do the familiar roadside fire danger signs really mean? Clear, colourful and simple, the signs’ message is not as obvious as it seems. The Scion Rural Fire Research Group is working with the Fire & Emergency New Zealand after a study found that many people are not sure what the danger ratings mean, or if they apply to them.

Scion research burning bright – K1, The New Zealand Firefighter Magazine (Nov. 2014)

Fires and forestry seem like things you wouldn’t want to mix, but that is what happens at Scion, New Zealand’s Crown Research Institute for forestry. The Rural Fire Research Group, part of the Forest Protection Team, specialises in fire in forest and rural landscapes. Over the past two decades of research into rural fire management, the group has seen fire prediction, prevention, management and even firefighter fitness become increasingly high tech.

Building community awareness of fire risks (Sep. 2014)

Scion’s Rural Fire Research Team has been running hot this past year with the fire research programme again receiving Gold status in the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s (MBIE) annual reporting round, one of only 18 awards over 250 contracts. The success is due in part to the development of new technologies, particularly fire behaviour tools such as smart phone ‘apps’, and a range of tools and recommendations for end-users based on sound science. It’s also reflective of the extensive collaboration undertaken by team members with researchers, industry groups and communities, both nationally and internationally.

Scion Annual Report Highlights 2014

See ‘Impact KPI 8: Reduce abiotic risk’ on pages 28-29 for rural fire-related activities.

For more Information:

SCION Fire Research Dec – Feb 2014 Click here to view the activities 

Sept – Nov 2013.  Click here to view the activities

Download the Oct 2012 - Oct 2013 Research Highlights  [744 Kb PDF]

Download the 2010/2011 Rural Fire Research Highlights [1.5Mb PDF]

Download the 2009/2010 Rural Fire Research Highlights [463 Kb PDF]

Bushfire CRC Project

The Bushfire Cooperative Research Centre was made up of all the fire and land management agencies in Australia and New Zealand, CSIRO, the Bureau of Meteorology, the Australaian Attorney General's Department and several other fire related organisations.

Visit the Bushfire CRC website - Another source of fire research in Australasia