How To Prepare Your Home For Wildfire
Homes built on the edge of forests and grasslands are especially vulnerable to wildfires. Development in this zone — known as the wildland-urban interface — is the fastest-growing land use type in the lower 48 states.
Here are a few steps you can take to protect your home from wildfire.
Roof: Replace with Class A, noncombustible materials. Prevent debris buildup by avoiding roofs with ridges and valleys, and use bird stops to seal open edges.
Gutters: Keep free of debris.
Crawlspace and attic: Install 1/8-inch metal mesh screens to keep embers out.
Windows: Replace single-pane windows with double-paned, tempered glass windows.
Chimney: Install a spark arrestor with 1/2-inch mesh to prevent embers from escaping.
Fence: Replace wood with noncombustible materials. Ensure that any part of a fence touching the home is noncombustible.
Create A Defensible Space:
Zone 1: 0-30 feet from your home. Cover the ground with noncombustible materials like gravel or concrete. Remove overhanging branches. Do not store firewood here.
Zone 2: 30-100 feet from your home. Use vegetation “islands” to break up continuous fuel sources. Limit debris and keep the grass under 8 inches.
Zone 3: 100-200 feet from your home. Maintain a minimum of 10 feet between treetops. Limit debris and remove ladder fuels — fuels that allow fires to climb vertically into the upper canopy.
In addition, write and memorize an emergency plan for your family. You may also want to pack an emergency kit with essentials like water, food and first aid materials. Find a suggested list of items on Ready.gov.
Copyright 2018 Oregon Public Broadcasting
It’s been a little over a year since the Camp Fire destroyed the town of Paradise, which impacted thousands of lives in Northern California. The disaster also alarmed people across the West, who are now asking themselves: Could a fire like that happen here? Continue Reading Across The West, Communities And Landowners Prepare For Their Own Paradise Wildfire Scenario
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Connecting different projects – like these large-scale fuels management ones – with efforts by homeowners down below helps make the landscape more resilient. It’s part of a larger effort to help central Washington avoid the fate of towns like Paradise, California, which was devastated by the Camp Fire in 2018.
Continue Reading In Central Washington, Forest Equipment Chews Through Fuel To Reduce Threat Of ‘The Next Paradise’