From our friends at Acuity Insurance comes this information, which we don’t want to have to think about, but it is better to consider this now and be prepared in advance. This summer has shown a preponderance of dry, drought conditions and high temperatures leading unfortunately to terrible fires burning around the Southwest.
Listed here are several suggestions that you can implement immediately. Others need to be considered at the time of construction or remodeling. You should also contact your local fire department, forestry office, emergency management office or building department for information about local fire laws, building codes and protection measures. Obtain local building codes and weed abatement ordinances for structures built near wooded areas.
Find Out What Your Fire Risk Is
Learn about the history of wildfire in your area. Be aware of recent weather. A long period without rain increases the risk of wildfire. Consider having a professional inspect your property and offer recommendations for reducing the wildfire risk. Determine your community’s ability to respond to wildfire.
- Are roads leading to your property clearly marked?
- Are the roads wide enough to allow firefighting equipment to get through?
- Is your house number visible from the roadside?
Learn and teach safe fire practices.
- Build fires away from nearby trees or bushes.
- Always have a way to extinguish the fire quickly and completely.
- Install smoke detectors on every level of your home and near sleeping areas.
- Never leave a fire, even “just” a cigarette, burning unattended.
- Avoid open burning completely, and especially during dry season.
Always be ready for an emergency evacuation.
- Evacuation may be the only way to protect your family in a wildfire.
- Know where to go and what to bring with you.
- You should plan several escape routes in case roads are blocked by a wildfire.