2020’s California Wildfire Season will go down as the most devastating one in the state’s history. Ever since state officials and first responders issued evacuation orders in late August, dozens of large wildfires have destroyed hundreds of thousands of acres of land. The situation is so severe that 5 of the state’s 20 biggest wildfires ever, all happened in 2020. This is according to data from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire).
Safety Starts with You:
If you’re fortunate enough not to have lost any property to the fires this year, the simple fact that they happened should still serve as a wake-up call. When it comes to protecting your home from wildfires, prevention is absolutely better than cure. Wildfires are unpredictable and destructive. Which is precisely why people should take initiative to set up safeguards against fires. Taking the right precautions can mean the difference between losing everything to a fire, and being able to salvage your possessions. Here are a few important ways to protect your property from wildfires:
1. Clear out Combustible Vegetation Around your Home:
One of the reasons why landscaping is so important is because this maintenance prevents dry shrubbery from building up. Aside from providing refuge to pests, dead leaves and twigs on a compound catch fire easily, and feed wildfires. Clearing out dry debris out from roofs, gutters and the exterior of your home eliminates a big source of fuel for wildfires.
2. Seal Off all Vents, Openings and Crevices to your Home:
One of the specific ways that wildfires end up destroying homes is by burning through embers that drift into exposed crevices/vents on a building’s facade. Where possible, every exterior opening on a home should be sealed off with fire-proof mesh that doesn’t have perforations larger than 1/8”. This helps block flames from burning in between the open gaps of a home’s structure.
3. Store Chemicals securely:
Proper storage of flammable household items is vital to prevent fire-related accidents. Especially during the summer months when temperatures are warmer. Items such as gasoline, turpentine, propane gas tanks, lighter fluid, aerosol cans, and others should not be left out in the open or stored in areas likely to be reached by wildfires. Some inflammables don’t just catch fire, they worsen the situation with explosions.
4. Use Fire-Resistant Materials to Decorate Your Home:
Wherever possible, never construct or enhance your home with materials that easily catch fire. When choosing plants to grow on your compound, choose trees and vegetation which don’t produce oils and resins. This is because oils help spread flames. Or when constructing, use fire-retardant treated wood to ensure that property doesn’t burn up without extreme exposure to heat.
Throughout all these preparations, also remember to be watchful of areas on your property that are away from its main structures. Sheds, decks, patios, and fences are often neglected when it comes to fire safety. Wildfires especially tend to form during summer weather because the heat and dryness of this season kindles shrubbery. Never dispose of cigarettes, charcoal or anything with hot embers by tossing it into the bush. For more information, visit our website or give us a call at 1-800-639-7654 to find out how Adriana’s Insurance Services can help you stay safe. We got you covered!