Every year the number of wildfires increases and puts hundreds of people and property at risk. Although wildfires are natural disasters, they are mostly caused due to human activities and negligence. Therefore, it is possible to take preventive measures to mitigate the risk. If you live in a fire-prone area, it’s essential that you plan ahead and always be prepared to evacuate. Consult with a fire protection specialist to figure out the best evacuation plans.
Tips for Wildfire Prevention
Here are a few tips for mitigating the risk and damage of wildfires:
- Immediately call your local fire department if you see an unattended or out of control fire.
- If you’re camping or cooking in the outdoors, never leave the fire unattended. Make sure it is completely extinguished by throwing water on the ashes or stirring them clean before you leave the location.
- Be extra careful when using heaters, stoves, and fueling lanterns. Always ensure that all electronic and heating devices are cool before you add fuel.
- Always clean spilled fuel or any other flammable liquids immediately. Keep such liquids away from appliances at all times.
- Never throw out matches, cigarettes, and any other smoking material from a moving or stationary car. Always ensure that cigarettes are completely extinguished before you dispose of them.
- Avoid burning waste in your yard, especially in windy conditions. If you must burn, make sure you remove all flammables from the site and follow local safety regulations.
Tips for Wildfire Risk and Damage Mitigation
If there’s a threat of a wildfire in your area, make sure you prepare your home for damage mitigation by taking the following action in and around your home:
- Remove overgrown and dead vegetation from your porch, deck, and yard that is within 10 feet of the house.
- Remove combustible materials from around your home, including patios and roofs.
- Remove all flammable materials, such as wood stacks, propane tanks, fuel, and heating equipment from within 30 feet of your home periphery.
- Wildfire easily spreads through treetops, so make sure no tall trees are close to the walls of your home.
- Keep your yard lawn hydrated. If the grass is brown and under-hydrated, cut it down so the fire intensity doesn’t increase because of it. Dry bushes and grass fuel the fire further, so it’s best to cut them off.
- Don’t keep any lawn cuttings or debris around your home. Get rid of them as soon as possible, so they don’t serve as fuel for the wildfire.
- Run a thorough inspection of your roof tiles and shingles and see if anything needs repairing.
- Prevent entry of ember in your home by covering exterior vents with metal mesh and closing all your windows and doors.
- Fill all large water containing spaces, such as swimming pools, garbage cans, buckets, and tubs with water to slow down the fire.
Emergency Evacuation Plan
If you live in a wildfire-prone area, it’s critical that you have an emergency plan with a fire protection design. Here are a few tips for creating one:
- Create an emergency supply kit and include a first aid kit, food supplies, medicine, and all important documents and place it in a safe and reachable spot.
- Design an emergency evacuation plan and test it with all the members of your home. Make sure everyone is aware of the protocol by making them practice the drill.
- Identify two ways out of your home and neighbourhood and designate a safe meeting place.
Wildfires are extremely dangerous, and therefore, it’s essential to take preventive measures to minimise their chances of occurrence. If you live in a wildfire-prone area, then you must create an emergency plan and take measures to minimise the damage to your home.