Data-Driven Structural Fire Risk Prediction for City Properties


  • Rupasree Dey Oregon State University
  • Alan Fern Oregon State University



Machine Learning , Smart Cities , Track: Emerging Applications


Fire Departments conduct inspections to prevent fires but it is unclear how to best allocate their limited inspection resources across the properties in a city. Currently, they use their intuition and experience to decide on which properties to inspect and lack a data-driven approach that could lead to a more principled use of inspection resources. The main contribution of this paper is to investigate such an approach, based on machine learning for predicting a fire risk score for properties in a city based on historical fire-incident data. These scores can then be used to help prioritize inspection resources toward higher-risk properties. We present a case study using data from a South Dakota fire department which contains information about properties in a city along with records of fire in- incidents. We use this data consisting of more than 72,000 properties to train a machine learning model to predict fire risk and evaluate its ability to rank the fire risk of properties in the city. We conduct and analyze experiments with variations of XG-Boost, which is an algorithm well-suited to the challenges in application, including missing data and a highly-skewed class distribution. Our evaluation of the model-generated rankings, based on ranking metrics, shows that the model significantly outperforms random rankings and other natural baselines. We also analyze the feature importance computed for the models, which provides further insight into the model behavior. This model has been integrated into an interface for displaying the rankings across a city and is ready for beta testing.



How to Cite

Dey, R., & Fern, A. (2024). Data-Driven Structural Fire Risk Prediction for City Properties. Proceedings of the AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence, 38(21), 22885-22891.