Create a defensible space around your home. Severe wildfire hazards exist on most forested homesites. Many hazards can be reduced to acceptable levels by following these fire safety guidelines:
Homeowner Fire Safety Practices
Use noncombustible or fire resistant building materials, especially on the roof.
Install chimney screen or spark arrestor.
Enclose or screen off porch, foundation, roof, and attic openings to keep debris from accumulating underneath or firebrands from entering.
Post house or lot number so that it is clearly visible.
Protect windows and sliding glass doors with nonflammable shutters and provide fire resistant drapes or blinds on the interior, especially on the side of the house that would most likely be exposed to a fire, e.g., the downhill side.
Inspect and clean your chimney on a regular basis.
Equip you home with smoke detectors and at least one 10 pound ABC-class fire extinguisher.
Bury power and telephone lines underground. If this is not possible, keep poles clear of branches and remove fuel from around base.
Develop an external water supply for firefighting. This can be a small pond, cistern, well, swimming pool, etc. If you have a well, provide a power source for the pump motor separate from the house. Have an outside water faucet located away from your home with sufficient hose to reach all parts of your residence.
Store tools such as shovels, axes, rakes or hoes for use in case of fire.
Dispose of leaves and debris with your trash. In most areas open burning is prohibited. If burning is allowed, provide an approved, properly screened incinerator.
Plan and rehearse a home fire escape drill.
Know where safety areas are within your subdivision. Meadows, rock outcrops, and wide roads are good examples. Know all emergency escape routes.
Report all fires immediately to your local fire department or the county sheriff's office.
Form a fire protection or forestry committee to organize and oversee needed projects and activities.
Install fuelbreaks at strategic locations throughout your subdivision.
Thin dense stands of trees and/or brush in common ground and greenbelts.
Maintain all road and street signs.
Install a fire danger sign at the entrance to your subdivision (ratings must be kept current on a daily basis) and other fire prevention signs throughout the subdivision.
Clear at least three feet around and above fire hydrants and make sure they are checked periodically for adequate flow and pressure.