Palm Coast is a city in Flagler County, Florida. Palm Coast is a principal town of the Palm Coast, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area, designated in 2007. Florida had its first serious "wildland urban interface" fire in 1985 with the Palm Coast Fire, which burned 131 homes. Research on this fire indicated that the most important factor was the proximity of heavy ground vegetation to the structure. Thirteen years later, fires struck the same Palm Coast subdivision. The 1998 fires were national news because the whole county was ordered to evacuate, and 45,000 people were displaced. Fire suppression organizations responded from 44 states, and Florida hosted the largest aerial suppression operation ever conducted in the United States. Because of the massive effort, only 71 homes were destroyed.