Filed Under:Agent Broker, Commercial Business

Top 10 ZIP codes for fire loss

Catastrophe and non-catastrophe events are happening in these areas in particular

A wildfire burns on a hillside near Othello, Washington, early Sunday, Aug. 13, 2017. (Photo: Associated Press/Ted S. Warren)
A wildfire burns on a hillside near Othello, Washington, early Sunday, Aug. 13, 2017. (Photo: Associated Press/Ted S. Warren)

Depending on where you live, you know there's a chance of extreme weather coming your way. 

Certain states have garnered a reputation over the year for natural disasters — hurricanes in Texas and Florida, earthquakes in California, and so on. Although some elements are more likely to strike in select areas, there is one that can occur at any time, at any place: fire.

Related: Wildfires: An expanding threat?

"Even if you're not in an area that's traditionally at threat for catastrophic fire loss, it can still happen," said George Hosfield, senior director at LexisNexis Risk Solutions. "Fire is one of those perils that can destroy your home." 

Fires are considered a non-catastrophe event in most cases, but they can cross the threshold and be considered a catastrophe. Some ZIP codes in the West are prone to fire because of the wind and air, while other ZIP codes are prone to lightning, which can lead to fires, presenting a significant risk to homeowners in the area.

Related: More extreme weather coming after record 2016 heat, WMO says 

No matter where you live, homeowners should consider this type of coverage, especially because, as Hosfield points out, a fire is going to be covered by a home insurance policy. 

Using fire events data by ZIP code for the period covering 2011 to 2016, LexisNexis Risk Solutions was able to determine which areas ranked highest based on loss cost and frequency. 

Gatlinburg Fire

The Laurel Point Resort in Gatlinburg, Tennesee endured extreme structural damage following the Gatlinburg wildfire. (Photo: Associated Press/Erik Schelzig)

Top ZIP codes for catastrophe events

10. Breezy Point, N.Y. (11697)


9. Methow, Wash. (98834)


8. Colorado Springs, Colo. (80919)


7. Pateros, Wash. (98846)


6. Gatlinburg, Tenn. (37738)


Related: The Gatlinburg Wildfire: Working inside the inferno

California fire

A firefighting plane drops fire retardant over a hillside in Middletown, California. (Photo: Associated Press/Elaine Thompson)

5. Colorado Springs, Colo. (80908)


4. Mokelumne Hill, Calif. (95245)


3. Hidden Valley Lake, Calif. (95467)


2. Mountain Ranch, Calif. (95246)


1. Middletown, Calif. (95461)


Related: Latest explosive California wildfire destroys dozens of homes [slideshow]

Lightning in Arizona

The skies in Phoenix brighten as lightning strikes in July 2017. According to LexisNexis Risk Solutions, Georgia experienced the highest loss cost, frequency and severity for lightning events. (Photo: Associated Press/Chirag A. Patel)

Top ZIP codes for non-catastrophe events

10. Chicago, Ill. (60628)


9. Memphis, Tenn. (38125)


8. Macon, Ga. (31210)


7. Birmingham, Ala. (35215)


6. Hereford, Ariz. (85615)


Related: Fires affect Canadian lumber mills, get close to Kinder pipeline

Lightning in Kansas

Lightning strikes close to the barn of the Taylor farm near Lawrence, Kansas. Hosfield suggests keeping an eye on the flammable material near your home — firewood, dry vegetation, shrubbery and pine needles, among others. (Photo: Associated Press/Orlin Wagner)

5. Barrington, Ill. (60010)


4. Colorado Springs, Colo. (80919)


3. Wenatchee, Wash. (98801)


2. Colorado Springs, Colo. (80908)


1. Gatlinburg, Tenn. (37738)


Related: At least 29 large wildfires ravage Western states [slideshow] 

Featured Video

Most Recent Videos

Video Library ››

Top Story

20 safest airlines to fly with in 2018

To recognize those leading the way, released its annual list of the world's safest airlines. Of the 409 airlines it monitors, 20 stand out as the 'best of the best.'

Top Story

11 ways cars will be smarter in 2018

Connected vehicle technology, better electric batteries, and 'infotainment' systems are just three of the trends for insurers and claims specialists to watch.

More Resources


eNewsletter Sign Up

Agent & Broker Insider eNewsletter

Proven success tips and essential information to help agents and brokers grow their practice – FREE. Sign Up Now!

Mobile Phone

Advertisement. Closing in 15 seconds.