Wildfires can happen anywhere, at anytime, and although we have had a great winter, and wet spring, it is still important to be prepared to protect yourself and your property.
Tips to Protect Your Home
One of the best ways to protect your home is to build a safer, defensible space around your property. Some of these mitigation activities include:
• Burning debris only on permissive burn days, and always alert your local fire department before you burn.
• Reduce the amount of flammable materials and brush that can burn around your home or business.
• Create a “fire-free” area within the first five feet of your home using non-flammable materials and high moisture content plantings.
• Maintain an area that is clear of flammable materials and debris for at least 30 feet on all sides of your home.
• Move woodpiles and propane tanks to at least 30 feet from your home.
• Prevent embers from a burning fire getting under an unprotected porch by installing a wire mesh screen.
We strongly encourage having a plan in place for your family and pets, in the event that a wildfire breaks out in your area. Below is a breakdown of how to prepare before, during, and after a wildfire.
As we all know, wildfires develop and spread quickly, leaving little time to evacuate to a safe location. Knowing what to do and having a plan set in place will help to keep you, your family, and your pets safe.
Before a Wildfire
• Sign up for our emergency alerts, you can do so here: garco911.org and/or pitkinalert.org
• Know several ways to evacuate your area and have a plan for pets and livestock.
• Keep emergency supplies ready to go, including medications.
• Store your important documents in a fireproof safe and always make digital copies.
During a Wildfire
• Follow evacuation orders.
• Listen to local station for emergency information and alerts.
• Turn on inside lights so that your house will be more visible in heavy smoke.
After a Wildfire
• Check with local authorities to make sure it is safe before you return to your home
• Avoid hot ash, charred trees, or smoldering debris. After a wildfire, the ground may contain heat pockets, which can harm you or your pets.
• If your property has sustained any damage, make sure to document with pictures, conduct an inventory and contact your insurance company.
With the memory of last summers’ Lake Christine Fire still at large in our minds, we urge our community members to take all of the necessary steps this summer to prevent the risk of another fire. Understanding and executing correct safety measures will help to make sure that our valley has a fun and safe summer season. As always, if you have any questions, feel free to reach out to your friends at the Carbondale Fire District.