Wildfires often begin unnoticed. They spread quickly, igniting brush, trees and homes. Reduce your risk by preparing now — before wildfire strikes. Meet with your family to decide what to do and where to go if wildfires threaten your area.
Make a Plan and be Prepared
Develop an emergency evacuation plan and practice it with everyone in your home.
Plan two ways out of your neighborhood and designate a meeting place.
Remove flammable materials (firewood stacks, propane tanks) within 30 feet of your home’s foundation and outbuildings, including garages and sheds. If it can catch fire, don’t let it touch your house, deck or porch.
Assemble an emergency supply kit and place it in a safe spot. Remember to include important documents, medications and personal identification.
Review insurance coverage to make sure it is enough to replace your property.
Protect Your Home
Create a 30-100 foot safety zone around your home, within this area, you can take steps to reduce potential exposure to flames and radiant heat. Homes built in pine forests should have a minimum safety zone of 100 feet.
Regularly clean your roof and gutters.
Inspect chimneys at least twice a year. Clean them at least once a year. Keep dampers in good working order.
Use 1/2 inch mesh screen beneath porches, decks, floor areas and home itself. Also, screen openings to floors, roof and attic.
Install a smoke detector on each level of your home, especially near bedrooms; test monthly and change the batteries two times each year.
When Wildfire Threatens
If you are warned that a wildfire is threatening your area make sure to monitor all information closely. Evacuate immediately if authorities tell you to do so.
Confine your pets to one room, Make plans to care for and tranfer your pets in case you must evactuate.
Arrange temporary housing at a friends or relative's home outside the threatened area.
If advised to evacuate make sure to:
Wear protective clothing — sturdy shoes, long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, gloves and a handkerchief to protect your face.
Take your Disaster Supplies Kit.
Lock your home.
Tell someone you and left and where you are going.
Choose a route away from fire hazards. Watch for changed in speed and direction of fire and smoke.
For more information on wildfire preparedness visit ready.gov.