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Rights: University of Waikato
Published 3 November 2009 Referencing Hub media
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STUART ANDERSON

If a fire is burning up a slope, up a hill, what actually happens is because of the angle of the slope, the vegetation above where the fire is burning, above the flame front, is in a way, really being tilted, I guess, towards the fire. The flames still go straight up but because you've got slope, they are actually making more contact with the vegetation ahead of the flame front and because they are making more contact with the vegetation up hill, they heat quicker and they then ignite and they burn faster. So a fire burning up a slope can burn a lot faster than a fire on level terrain.