Spring and Summer generally bring drier conditions in the Northern Utah area and a need for awareness of wildfire prevention and safety.
The City of Ogden’s May/June Newsletter had a great list of fire safety tips … One of their tips that really stood out was to make sure your house number is clearly visible from the street – especially at night using at least 4” reflective numerals.
Firewise.org has a very useful checklist for Homeowner Wildfire safety:
- Clear leaves and other debris from gutters, eaves, porches and decks. This prevents embers from igniting your home.
- Remove dead vegetation from under your deck and within 10 feet of the house.
- Remove anything stored underneath decks or porches.
- Screen or box-in areas below patios and decks with wire mesh to prevent debris and combustible materials from accumulating.
- Remove flammable materials (firewood stacks, propane tanks, dry vegetation) 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.
- Wildfire can spread to tree tops. If you have trees on your property, prune so the lowest branches are 6 to 10 feet from the ground.
- Keep your lawn hydrated and maintained. If it is brown, cut it down to reduce fire intensity. Dry grass and shrubs are fuel for wildfire.
- Don’t let debris and lawn cuttings linger. Dispose of these items quickly to reduce fuel for fire.
- Inspect shingles or roof tiles. Replace or repair those that are loose or missing to prevent ember penetration.
- Cover exterior attic vents with metal wire mesh no larger than 1/8 inch to prevent sparks from entering the home.
- Enclose under-eave and soffit vents or screen with metal mesh to prevent ember entry.
- Home outdoor cooking, fireplaces and fire pits can also spark wildfires. Unattended charcoal briquettes and ash from fireplaces and woodstoves may still be hot and contain embers. These may start a fast spreading fire. According to Smokey the Bear, “When disposing of briquettes and ash outside, drown the charcoal and ash with lots of water; stir them, and soak again. Be sure they are out cold”.
Fire safety is important and the time for prevention needs to be done before any fires start.
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