COLORADO SPRINGS — Coloradans know all too well the devastation that comes with wildfires in our region, and since the destructive Waldo Canyon Fire in the Springs, the Colorado Springs Fire Department has put in a place a solid mitigation program.
The programs include the Neighborhood Chipping Program, which allows the fire department to help residents with removing hazardous tree branches and vegetation. The best thing you can do is create a defensible space around your property. They ask that residents do not have mulch on their properties but choose stone instead. They also ask that you choose plants that are less flammable. You can visit a list of the recommended plants for landscaping in Colorado here.
Those at the Colorado Springs Fire Department say you can never have enough warnings in high-risk situations. Here is a map of what the fire department considers "high-risk" areas.
“You can never be warned soon enough. Anytime someone is feeling uncomfortable, or they see smoke, or they think it’s just getting a little to close for comfort. We always encourage them to get out when they think it’s unsafe for them. Don’t wait for us to tell you to get out,” said Melissa Hoffman, Wildfire Mitigation Program Coordinator, Colorado Springs Fire Department.
The city has in place a Wildland Urban Interface Design Manual with strict codes for builders who are putting up homes in areas at a higher risk of being destroyed by a fire. But what about the homes that are a bit older?
Upon request, the fire department will come to your home and offer fire mitigation suggestions to help you protect your property.
For those who wish to have an on-site consultation on their property, you can visit here.