We are approaching the Santa Ana winds of the late summer. Here are some ways to help prevent your home from being a statistic.
First, we need to have at least a 100 foot defensible space around the house. This means clearing the brush and dry material from the area surrounding your home. If your house is on a slope 100 feet may not be enough as flames burn uphill with more intensity and speed. Certain yard plants can help retard the fire, while others like pine trees can add to the problem. Check with your local nurseries for plants that can help your situation
Second, Clean the roof of dry vegetation. Leaves tend to accumulate on the roof and in the gutters through the year. A quick cleaning removes this flammable material and could in turn save your home.
Lastly the type of roof on the house can make a big difference. Tile or concrete roofs with caps tend to be very fire safe from the point of wildfires. Shake type roofs tend to be much more flammable. It is not my suggestion you need to change your roof today, but being aware of the risk, there are things that can be done. A shake roof can be treated with fire retardant to add a layer of security. When o roof needs replacing there are several grades of roofing material that are fire resistant.
I am looking forward to the fall season. With a little preparation we can have a safe end of the fire season