||The HighFire Risk Project seeks to understand the drivers of bushfire risk in and adjacent to the high
country. Using literature reviews, studies of large fires and field studies we are building a clearer picture
of those drivers.
The role of establishment of a suitable fuel -age mosaic is dicussed in the context of this risk picture.
We conclude that the High Country is a landscape that is prone to multiple ignitions in places where fire
suppression is most difficult . Further it is a landscape that is prone to a range of processes that can affect
the probabilities of fire escalation. It is also a landscape that stores the effects of past large fires in the
landscape -scale fuel -age distribution – the last big fire primes the landscape fo r the next one.
- The role of ruggedness as an initiator of fire, through influences of lightning ignition preval ence.
- Nocturnal low-level jets, subsidence inversions and other dew point anomalies, giving peak
FFDIs at nighttime.
- Dry slots of dry upper air causing catastrophic fire expansion.
- Unusual combustion processes and landscape scale flashovers.
- Violent pyro-cumulonimbus development, with global -scale impacts
- Mountain wind waves with the potential to resonate with the landscape.
- Foehn winds, a little understood feature of Australian landscapes.
- Dynamic channelling, a process the can create landscape -scale flami ng zones.
- Terrain chimneys, shown by European research to create exponential increases in rates -ofspread.
- Plume-driven fires, a phase -transition to totally different fire behaviour drivers.
- The role of ruggedness as a fire limiter, of significance for prot ection efforts.
This framework makes clearer the way to avoid the next catastrophic fire.