Home Fire Safety

Millions of Californians live in residential developments that border fire-prone wildlands. Each year, hundreds of homes in these "suburban" and rural areas are lost to wildfire outbreaks. According to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CDF), homeowners can substantially increase the chance of their home surviving a wildfire by following these fire safe practices:

Image of Home fire diagramA. Maintain a "defensible" space around your home by clearing all flammable vegetation a minimum of 30 feet around the structure. Clear dead leaves and branches, leaving widely spaced ornamental shrubbery and trees in place.

B. Clean all needles and leaves from the roof, eaves and rain gutters.

C. Trim tree limbs within 10 feet of your chimney and trim all dead limbs hanging over your house or garage.

D. Cover your chimney outlet or flue with a spark arresting ½" mesh screen.

E. Make sure your address is clearly visible for easy identification in an emergency, use reflectorized numbers.

F. Make sure you know where the fire hydrant is, or that you have a water storage supply of at least 2,500 gallons for use during an emergency.

G. Stack woodpiles at least 30 feet from buildings, fences and other combustible materials.

H. Clear all vegetation and flammable materials from beneath your deck. Enclose undersides of elevated decays with fire- resistive materials.

For more information, contact the nearest CDF office listed in your telephone directory under State of California, or your local fire department.