The Exposure Index: Developing firefighter safety performance measures
A cornerstone of effective institutional learning and accountability is the development, tracking, and analysis of informative performance measures. In a previous issue of Fire Management Today ("A New Look at Risk Management," Winter 2011), a series of articles highlighted the importance of organizational safety and risk management and the challenges of balancing safety, efficiency, and effectiveness in the wildfire management environment. Assessing risks to firefighter safety can be difficult, especially in the complex, uncertain, and dynamic environment of active incident management. Programmatic evaluation of firefighter safety is likewise difficult. Additional concerns regarding efficiency and escalating wildfire management costs pose challenges for the Forest Service.