Worried about insurance, San Marcos officials kept fire risk map secret
For five years, San Marcos city officials kept from public view a color-coded map showing varying degrees of risk to residents from catastrophic wildfires ---- including two neighborhoods judged to be in "extreme" danger of property loss, death or injury ---- for fear insurance companies would use the information to justify dropping policies or hiking rates, officials have acknowledged.
In 2005, San Marcos commissioned a study to assess wildfire risks for the city's communities. The study rated two communities as having "extreme" and five as having "very high" risks during wildfires.
City officials said in a series of recent interviews that they decided not to publicly release a color-coded map from the study that marked Coronado Hills and neighboring Attebury in a shade of deep red ---- signifying extreme wildfire hazard ---- opting instead to circulate a version showing all wildfire areas in a uniform shade of green.