Fires are a common, disastrous phenomenon that constitutes a serious threat for several regions of the planet. Because of their speed of spread and intensity they often lead to property damages, personal injuries and loss of human lives. Countries in the Mediterranean basin suffer from 50.000 fires annually with damaged land that covers 600.000 hectares. The cost of fire prevention and fire fighting in the Southern Europe countries scales up to 1 billion USD. The cost of the destructive fires of 2007 in Greece has been estimated to 1 billion euros. The land impacted by fires annually in the same region is equivalent to the surface of Crete or Corsica while the fires in Spain, Portugal, France, Italy and Greece have quadrupled since the 1960's.
The probability of forest fire eruption in the Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) is steadily increasing due to the climate change and human activities. WUI refers to all types of areas covered by forests, water bodies, and rural lands interface with buildings and infrastructures, including first and secondary home areas, industrial areas and tourist developments. The rapid development of WUI areas is the outcome of pollution and overpopulation of city centers that grew in the ‘70s. Settlements were built without efficient road networks, and homes and other buildings were developed in or near areas that form the flood plain of water catchments.