Wildland Urban Interface

What is Wildland Urban Interface?

Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) refers to the zone where human development, such as residential or commercial developments, or infrastructure, meet or intermingle with undeveloped wildand or vegetative fuels. It is the area where urban or suburban areas come into contact with natural landscapes, which may include forests, grasslands, or shrublands. 

In the WUI, there is an increased risk of wildfire due to the proximity of human activities to flammable vegetation and naturally fire prone areas. This interface creates unique challenges for both fire management and community safety. 

How is the city of Lake Elsinore affected by WUI?

The City of Lake Elsinore is located within Local and State Responsibility High Fire Severity Zones, as illustrated on the map here.  Due to its proximity to wildlands, the City is at a high risk of wildfires, which can spread rapidly and cause extensive property damage and pose a risk to life-safety. Some of these risks may include evacuation challenges, air quality, insurance and property values, resource strain, and wildlife and environmental impacts. 

What can we do to protect ourselves and our neighbors?

Working in cooperation with one another, we can take several steps to mitigate the risk of wildfires. 

  1. Creating Defensible Space: Maintaining a defensible space around your property by clearing away dead/overgrown vegetation. This space acts as a barrier between your home and advancing fire. Please visit the CalFire Defensible Space page for more information. 
  2. Regular Maintenance: Regularly clean your roof and gutters to ensure they are free of debris like twigs and leaves that could catch fire. 
  3. Fire-Resistant Building Materials: When building or renovating your home, fire resistant building, roofing and siding materials should be used. 
  4. Access: Ensure that your home is easily accessible to emergency vehicles. This includes clearly marking your home's address and maintaining clear driveways and paths. 
  5. Emergency Plan: Have an emergency plan in place. Visit this link to create your own custom plan to prepare for a wildfire. 

Remember, these measures do not guarantee your home will be safe in the event of a wildfire, but they can significantly reduce the risk. 

To check the readiness of and to better prepare your home, in the event of a wildfire, please visit this link

Defensible Space Inspections - Assembly Bill 38 (AB-38)

On or after July 1/2021, properties located in a High or Very High Fire Hazard Severity Zone (FHSZ) are required to have documentation of a compliant Defensible space Inspection, per Section 4291 of the Public Recourses Code.

Please note that this inspection is only required during the purchase or sale of a property within the High/Very High FHSZ. 

Defensible Space inspections are conducted through CalFire and an Inspection Request can be submitted here.

Helpful Links

Fire Hazard Severity Zone Map (County) State Responsibility

Fire Hazard Severity Zone Map (County) Local Responsibility

Wildfire Action Plan

City of Lake Elsinore Hazardous Vegetation and Rubbish Abatement Program