• One of the primary roles of government is to ensure the safety of its citizens. Since its inception in 1915, Texas A&M Forest Service has been tasked with the responsibility of wildfire suppression, defending both the property and lives of Texas citizens.


    In a growing state like Texas, cities, communities and suburbia are expanding into rural areas, and people and structures are now in proximity to large amounts of vegetation and have an increased wildfire risk.


    Between Jan. 1, 2005, and Dec. 31, 2022, 231,253 wildfires burned more than 12.4 million acres across the state. Most of these wildfires, some 85%, ignited within 2 miles of a community.


    Once primarily a rural concern, wildfires are now a statewide threat that impact communities across the state and have the potential to damage thousands of homes and other critical infrastructure.


    What is the Texas Wildfire Protection Plan?

    The Texas Wildfire Protection Plan (TWPP) has been used and refined over the past two decades as wildfires and wildfire-related issues continue to impact the state. The TWPP outlines a tested and proven emergency response model that emphasizes ongoing analysis, prevention and preparedness followed by a coordinated and rapid response.


    Under the TWPP, Texas A&M Forest Service works to reduce wildfire occurrence and loss in Texas through integrated programs that improve preparedness and response capabilities statewide. The practices outlined in this plan are incorporated into the operational structure of the Forest Resource Protection Division.


    This is a coordinated effort between the seven departments within the division: Applied Technology, Capacity Building, Field Operations, Law Enforcement, Mitigation and Prevention, Planning and Preparedness and Predictive Services.


    Texas Wildfire Protection Plan, Revised May 2023 - view document


    Comments and questions about the Texas Wildfire Protection Plan can be submitted to the following agency contact:

    Information Officer

     + Texas Wildfire Response

    Texas uses a tiered approach to wildfire response. Local fire departments and counties are the first responders, with state response activated as wildfires or conditions exceed local capabilities.


    Across the state, there are more than 1,800 local fire departments ready to respond to wildfires or other emergencies. Texas A&M Forest Service works with local response entities to establish unified command operations on all wildfires involving local and state resources.


    Texas A&M Forest Service is the lead agency for wildfire response in the state and maintains a network of strategically placed personnel and equipment for an efficient and effective response statewide. The agency is responsible for ensuring the safe and effective delivery of the mission to provide protection of the lives, property and resources of the citizens of Texas.  


    Adding to the efforts of Texas A&M Forest Service, additional firefighters are mobilized through the Texas Intrastate Fire Mutual Aid System (TIFMAS) to help. TIFMAS resources are mobilized under jurisdiction of the state to respond to wildfire incidents across the state.


    As the complexity of statewide wildfire response continues to increase, wildland firefighters from across the nation are brought in, under state jurisdiction, to meet essential needs. This is supported by a set of agreements that Texas A&M Forest Service maintains with federal wildland fire agencies.


     + The Texas Wildfire Protection Plan

    The Texas Wildfire Protection Plan (TWPP) describes how Texas A&M Forest Service will mitigate against, prepare for and respond to wildfires and other disasters across the state.


    Initially drafted following the 1998 wildfire season, the TWPP defines Texas A&M Forest Service’s emergency management organization. The plan also identifies responsibilities and expectations in the agency’s efforts to prevent and mitigate wildfires, manage statewide wildfire operations and provide all-hazard emergency response support.


    While comprehensive, the TWPP provides flexibility to facilitate and accomplish emergency management objectives.