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How homeowners can protect their home from wildfires

How homeowners can protect their home from wildfires
Posted at 6:08 AM, Aug 11, 2021

COLORADO SPRINGS — With the wildfires in California and Oregon, we can see haze in the air here in Colorado Springs. While our region has remained green this summer, it is always a good idea to take the steps needed to protect your home from a wildfire.

It has been hard to see some of the mountains these past few weeks here because of the horrible wildfires taking place in other parts of the United States, which is why it is important to revisit the conversation of wildfire mitigation.

Many here in the Springs might remember the Waldo Canyon Fire in 2012 and most recently, the Bear Creek Fire last fall, which caused people to evacuate.

If you look at the News5 Drought Monitor map, you will notice that the statewide map shows areas out near Grand Junction are dealing with an extreme drought season.

The story is not the same for Colorado Springs and nearby areas as you can see from the local map. Now, I spoke with our News5 meteorologists and the Colorado Springs Fire Department, and they both agreed that the possibility of a drought could be in conversation in the upcoming months.

While we want the rain to continue to fall, it is best for homeowners to be proactive in protecting their homes and our community from wildfires.

“We would love to see that rain just keep coming but if it does decide to stop, and all of this vegetation that’s grown up decides to dry out, we want to give homeowners the biggest chance of standalone survivability of a wildfire, by creating that defensible space ahead of time. So, if a wildfire does come in, if it should dry out, they have the best chance of their home surviving a wildfire,” said Melissa Hoffman, Wildfire Mitigation Program Coordinator.

Homeowners should also create 30 feet of defensible space around their home. This means the fire department wants to see 15 feet of clearance from tree branches to your home, if possible.

It is also important to removed dead, diseased trees, keep grass and weeds to a maximum height of four inches, and store firewood at least fifteen feet away from your home.

For more details on how you can help to mitigate wildfires, visit here.