The links and references on this page are intended to complement information presented in the:
WFDSS online help. Page-level, context-sensitive help is available within the application by clicking the Help link or Help icon. The help is updated frequently.
WFDSS training. Webinars, Quick Tips, and videos provide users with information about application functionality.



The WFDSS application is "data rich". It requires spatially oriented data and graphically displays information to assist the fire managers and analysts in making strategic decisions for fire incidents. Due to the type and number of interagency spatial data sets required, an interagency GIS Team was formed to provide data support for WFDSS.

Glossary of Terms

Analyst-Assisted Basic Fire Behavior models fire behavior in the direction of maximum spread when the default "Direction from Max" is kept at 0. However, Fire Behavior Specialists and Super Analysts can calculate outputs for backing and flanking fires by modifying the "Direction from Max," using any integer from 1-359. For example, to calculate fire behavior for a backing fire, the analyst would enter 180 and to calculate fire behavior for a flanking fire, would enter 90.


Date Event
June 2005 National Fire and Aviation Executive Board charters WFDSS Phase I
April 2006 Initial planning and requirements analysis completed
October 2006 Forest Services contracts with IBM to develop WFDSS system
June 2007


Over the past 30 years, fires have dramatically increased in size and complexity, often stretching the capacity of the management systems in place. The Wildland Fire Decision Support System (WFDSS) project evolved from the need to streamline and improve these decision-making processes, as well as take advantage of improvements in technology, fire modeling, and geospatial analysis. 


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