Last year saw a vast number of wildfires that had devastating results. Although it can be very hard to stop a wildfire, prevention is the key. How can we be responsible property owners with regard to this?
One way to do this is by preparing our homes and surrounding land so that it is harder for a wildfire to spread. This is referred to as “Defensible Space” and involves removing things like foliage etc. that could increase the spread of a fire
Why is this so important?
Defensible space can help in numerous ways. Firstly, it lets firefighters and their apparatus gain easier access to your home or property. Remember, there is a much greater chance they will be able to save your property if they are right there at the site.
Another important factor to remember is that for defensible space to work effectively it has to have frequent maintenance. Clear away vegetation or other matter that provides fuel for fires. A fire will grow weak if it has no fuel to keep it going which helps firefighters extinguish the flames faster.
A crucial factor when it comes to fire spreading is time. The quicker firefighters can access a water supply the better it will be. If you live on a property with a body of water like a pond, ensure there is easy access to it so that the fire department can make the best use of their time.
There may be certain requirements and standards put in place by the local authorities regarding defensible space, so make sure you check with them first before you plan any large projects. You don’t want to endanger any wildlife etc.
Dave Graham, Tempest Home Inspection. Calgary Alberta