If you have lived in Southern California for a few years, you are probably familiar with the dangers of wildfires.
Just like any other natural disaster, it is important to prepare for the possible threat of wildfires and The Lawhead Team would like to share some tips to ensure your family and home are fully prepared for wildfires.
- Clearly mark driveway entrances and display your name and address on your mailbox or home so emergency vehicles can reach you easily.
- Plan and practice two ways out of your neighborhood in the event your primary route becomes blocked during the threat of wildfires.
- Identify and maintain an adequate water source outside your home, such as a small pond, cistern, well, swimming pool, or hydrant. Keep a garden hose that is long enough to reach any area of the home and other structures on the property
- Keep potential fire tools handy, such as a rake, ax, hand saw or chain saw, bucket and shovel. You may need them to fight small fires before emergency responders arrive.
- Select building materials that can help resist fire rather than fuel it.
- Keep roofs and gutters free of dead limbs, needles and debris that can spread wildfires.
- Equip chimneys and stovepipes with a spark arrester. This will reduce the chance of burning cinders escaping through the chimney, starting outdoor wildfires.
- Have a fire extinguisher and learn how to use it. There is no time to read directions during an emergency.
- Keep a tall ladder handy in the event you need to get on the roof to remove combustible debris.
- Plant fire-resistant shrubs and trees. Fire-resistant plants are less likely to ignite and spread fire closer to your home.
- Have a professional tree service create a 15-foot (5-meter) space between tree crowns and remove limbs within 6 -10 feet (2 to 3 meters) of the ground. This will help reduce the chance of fire spreading from tree to tree or from ground to tree.
- Place stove, fireplace and grill ashes in a metal bucket, soak in water for two days, then bury the cold ashes in mineral soil. Fires can start quickly from hidden cinders or burnt materials that are still hot.
- Fire tends to travel uphill, so keep highly combustible materials above your home. Place propane tanks and firewood stacks at least 30 feet (9 meters) away and uphill from your home.