Wildfire Defense Systems
A proactive approach for limiting the potential damage of a disaster.
Wildfire protection services have become more prevalent as the threat of wildfires grows in the western U.S. every year. State Farm® is working with Wildfire Defense Systems (WDS) to help mitigate that threat for all eligible non-tenant homeowner policyholders in Arizona, Colorado, Oregon and Washington and farm/ranch policyholders in Colorado, Oregon and Washington. To learn more, please visit the Wildfire Defense Systems website at www.wildfire-defense.com.
So far, the WDS teams have been able to respond to dozens of fires across the western United States. Through September 2021, the wildfire defense teams visited thousands of properties and saved hundreds of homes. In the case that some home damage occurs, customers can process claims as usual.
Why is State Farm providing wildfire protection services?
Recent devastating wildfire seasons prompted State Farm to look at proactive ways to help our customers before a disaster and to find home wildfire protection systems to reduce damages. As a result, State Farm is positioned to provide access to this large-scale, lifesaving service, and the Wildfire Defense Systems is poised to provide the service itself.
What is the cost for this service?
There is no additional cost for State Farm non-tenant policyholders.
Who gets a Wildfire Response Endorsement?
Because there is no charge for the service to our customers, a Wildfire Response Endorsement has been added to all eligible non-tenant homeowner policies in Arizona, Colorado, Oregon and Washington and farm/ranch policies in Colorado, Oregon and Washington. This includes homes that appear to be at minimal risk to wildfire. Unfortunately, wildfires are advancing on areas that have typically not seen this threat in the past, so it is difficult to determine who is at risk and who is not.
Who administers this service?
Wildfire Defense Systems will be contracted to provide these services on behalf of State Farm to our customers in designated states. Wildfire Defense Systems has been providing these services since 2008 and is well respected as the leader in this industry. They have monitored more than 58,000 fires in 22 states on behalf of insurers since 2013. Wildfire Defense Systems employees are experienced, highly trained, safety-focused wildfire officers and fire personnel that meet or exceed all federal wildfire operation standards and codes including all requirements of the National Wildfire Coordination Group or equivalent.
Will the State Farm wildfire protection services interfere with the authorities deployed to a wildfire?
Wildfire Defense Systems only operates at the direction and with the express approval of the local, state or federal authorities as it relates to areas that can be accessed during a wildfire event. They will not enter an area without these authorities being aware of their presence and without their permission.
Who makes the decision during a wildfire event?
All decisions regarding the protection of the home are determined by Wildfire Defense Systems and their field crews. State Farm does not influence the actions of the field crews when on-site. The decisions they make are influenced by the behavior of the fire and the decisions of the state and federal incident command managing firefighting resources.
How will Wildfire Defense Systems help protect my home?
Wildfire Defense Systems may visit your property if it is located in an area with an active wildfire to assess the threat and their field crews may take pre-suppression and post-suppression actions. They'll determine the most appropriate mitigation methods based on their professional judgment. Those actions may include:
- Fuel source mitigation by moving combustible material away from the home
- Clearing gutter and roof debris
- Taping off exposed vents
- Installing temporary sprinkler systems
- Extinguishing active fire or smoldering embers on your property and, in some cases, applying fire protection products including fire blocking gel or foam
- Returning to the home after the wildfire passes to monitor and extinguish hotspots and collect their equipment
Will Wildfire Defense Systems need access to the interior of my home?
Wildfire Defense Systems does not enter the interior of the home. Their mission is to help prevent the home from catching fire and all the mitigation activities to do that center around activities on the exterior of the home.
How will I know Wildfire Defense Systems have been to my home?
Wildfire Defense Systems personnel will leave behind a door hanger that indicates to the homeowner that they were there, what they did and what customers can do moving forward to protect their home from wildfire. Typically, a customer will not be present at their property when Wildfire Defense Systems arrives on-site due to local evacuation decisions. It is possible you will see the wildfire protection service personnel and vehicles, which are clearly marked as insurance resources, responding to the wildfire.
While providing wildfire defensive measures does not guarantee every home will be saved, this is one example of how State Farm is being proactive to help farm/ranch and non-tenant homeowner customers combat a growing threat.