As our season continues to move into hot dry wildfire conditions, fire experts say now is the time to prepare your property to be fire safe.
"People say it's not going to happen to them, but it's only a matter of when and where," said Chris Barth, Coordinator for the City's FireWise Program. Barth visits homes in the wildland urban interface to share how home owners can mitigate their property to make it fire safe. He says the most important part of the house is the roof when it comes to preventing fires, saying Class "A" noncombustible roofs such as those made of tile are the best.
"Homes burn down in wildfires generally because an ember will get caught in a wood shake shingle roof," said Barth. "Long after the fire passes, that home could still burn down."
Barth adds keeping the area under decks clear of objects and shrubbery will help keep it from catching on fire. He also says building a non-combustible barrier around your house to create a fire buffer zone is a good idea, adding that rocks work the best. Barth says trees should be trimmed to remove branches that touch the ground and those growing closer than 10 feet to the home should be cleared.
If you live in the wildland urban interface, you can request a FireWise representative to visit your home. Their number is 385-7281.