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Wildfire Safety, Protect your self

I was introduced to a great safety list from the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety. It gives a great list of things to do to do your best to protect your home in event of a wildfire headed in your direction. These are things to be done prior to be told to get out. The  foremost thing is to protect yourself and your family.

First and foremost have an evacuation plan. Where are you and your family going to meet up if you are separated. Who can you call outside of the fire area to let them know you are OK and act as a rallying point for information for family members. Have you planned for alternate routes of ingress and egress in event one is blocked. Probably the most important thing is to have a go bag prepared in advance. Your medications, glasses a flashlight and  important phone numbers and insurance documents. Check out  

ready.gov/kit  for a complete list. Oh and before you leave be sure to turn off the air conditioning and shut off the gas.

 

But even before the fire there are things you can do. If you have a wooden fence be sure to clear the dead grass at least three feet from the fence and be sure the ground under the fence is bare. All leaves on the roof should be cleared of so that an ember can not catch them on fire. Do you have a propane tank and is cleared of combustible material. Where are the BBQ propane tanks. They need to be able to be moved away from the house in event of a fire. Be prepared to move them well away from the house and in plain sight so that fire fighters know they are there. Also take a look around, are there toys and combustibles items up against the house? Deck chairs and their cushions can put your house at risk.

Finally, think about where embers could get into your house. Attic vents, do you have time to close them with a non-flammable material? Do you have items stored in the attic next to vents that could make it easier for a fire to start. If so move them. Also Dryer vents and any venting that has a large screen mesh should be closed off if a fire is headed your way.

Of course I have made the assumption that you have already created a clear space around your house so that all the dead vegetation has been removed, there are no tree limbs hanging on the house and no brush on the ground within 300 feet of the house. What we all want is that when the fire fighters get to your house they see a house they can save without put their lives in mortal jeopardy. If they can save it they will as they show time after time.

It is up to us to do our part, so please be safe out there.

 

 

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