CAL FIRE Tools for ArcGIS 10

CAL FIRE developed a set of Geographic Information System (GIS) tools (“PFE ColorMap and the CDF Incident Mapping Tools”) through a contract with VESTRA Resources, Inc. in 2002-04 for use in fire incident mapping and everyday GIS work.  These tools were used to facilitate the processes of data editing and manipulation, and of creating standard fire incident and other maps in a timely and consistent manner.  The tools were written as extensions to the ArcGIS 9.x software from Environmental Systems Research Institute, Incorporated (ESRI).  In 2011-12, a new contract funded by federal grant dollars was awarded to VESTRA Resources to update the tools to work in ArcGIS 10 and ArcGIS 10.1.  The new version, now called the CAL FIRE Tools, includes additional tools to streamline GIS processes.  The new tools are no longer an ArcGIS Extension, but are now installed as ESRI Add-Ins, a new method to perform custom tasks in ArcGIS.  In 2013-14, CAL FIRE had VESTRA develop a new version of the CAL FIRE Tools, which included new functionality and bug fixes and will work in both ArcGIS 10.1 and 10.2 (note the different installs for each ArcGIS version).  The ArcGIS 10.0 version of the tools was not modified at this time.  Previous versions of the CAL FIRE Tools must be uninstalled using the standard Windows uninstall process and the “Batch Define Projection” tool in ArcCatalog must be manually removed using the Add-In Manager prior to installing the latest version of the tools.  It is recommended that you read the “CALFIRE_Tools_Readme.doc” prior to installing the tools to get more details regarding installing, uninstalling and known issues with the tools.


By downloading the CAL FIRE Tools, the user agrees to the following terms and conditions. The State of California and the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection make no representations or warranties regarding the methods, procedures, or results of tools. The user will not seek to hold the State or the Department liable under any circumstances for any damages with respect to any claim by the user or any third party on account of or arising from the use of the tool. There are no restrictions on distribution of the tool by users. However, users are encouraged to refer others to the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection to acquire the tool, in case an updated tool becomes available.

These tools are provided as is and without user support. Please do not contact VESTRA Resources, Inc. for CAL FIRE Tools support. Please use the following email address if you would like to report a problem with the tools:

Download CAL FIRE Tools 10.0
Download CAL FIRE Tools 10.1
Download CAL FIRE Tools 10.2

CAL FIRE Tools Information

In addition to the four main tool categories noted below, a new tool, Batch Define Projection, is installed in ArcCatalog.  This tool allows the GIS user to define the projection for all GIS data within a specific folder.  After the CAL FIRE Tools are installed, this tool is added to ArcCatalog as a new button as shown below.
  Description: C:\Users\richstraz\Documents\Incident Mapping\2012\CAL_FIRE_Tools\20120530_Version\CALFIRE_Tools_BatchDefineProjection_Icon.jpg

CAL FIRE Tools toolbar
Description: C:\Users\richstraz\Documents\Incident Mapping\2012\CAL_FIRE_Tools\CALFIRE_Tools_Toolbar_Docked.jpg

The four main tool categories are as follows:

  • Color Map Tools – For copying, loading and manipulating FRAP, USGS, USFS PBS and FSTopo, and other digital raster graphic (DRG) topographic maps.

              Description: CALFIRE_Tools_ColorMapToolsMenu


  • Shape Conversion Tools – Provide tools for editing and conversion of GIS data.

                Description: CALFIRE_Tools_ShapeCoversionToolsMenu_Final

  • Geoprocessing Tools – Provide geoprocessing functions for use on GIS data.

                Description: CALFIRE_Tools_GeoprocessingToolsMenu

  • Map Production Tools – Includes tools for making multi-page maps (perfect for Incident Action Plan Maps – IAP), generic layouts, simple legends, vicinity maps and time stamps.



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