As fire season continues to ramp up, it’s important to make sure you + your loved ones are prepared in the event a fire does break out near your home. Today, we’re giving you tips on how to be fire-ready in case an emergency happens.
Defend your home
Residents who live within one mile of grasslands, forests, or other natural areas are urged to create defensible spaces around their properties to reduce the risk of fire from wind-driven embers. There are two zones to consider when creating a defensible space:
- Zone One — Extends 30 ft from all buildings. Dead + dying vegetation, including wood piles and dry leaves, should be removed completely. Trees should be trimmed 10 ft from the chimney. Fuel ladders, low-level vegetation or materials that allow the fire to spread from the ground to the tree canopy, should be removed as well.
- Zone Two — Extends 30-100 ft from all buildings. Grass should be kept at a max height of 4 inches, and fallen leaves or twigs should reach a height of no more than 3 inches. Fuel ladders should be removed as well, and trees should be trimmed to be a minimum of 10 ft apart.
An emergency kit
The first step to preparing for a fire is to put together an emergency kit. Make sure to keep this in an easy-accessible space should a fire break out. Cal Fire recommends your kit includes:
- Three-day supply of nonperishable food
- Three gallons of water per person
- Prescriptions or special medications
- Copies of important documents like birth certificates, passports, etc.
- Flashlight + first-aid kit
- Extra clothes
- Extra set of car keys and credit cards
- Map marked with two evacuation routes in the event GPS fails
- Battery-powered radio with extra batteries
The Six P’s
If you don’t have an emergency kit ready, Cal Fire officials say to remember to bring The Six P’s with you:
- People + pets
- Papers, phone numbers + important documents
- Pictures + irreplaceables
- PC hard drives
- Plastic (such as debit + credit cards) and cash
Where to look
Cal Fire + other agencies post the most up-to-date information on their Twitter pages regarding current evacuation orders, shelter information, and firefighting progress. Some of the agencies to follow are:
- Cal Fire
- Cal Fire Amador-El Dorado Unit
- Cal Fire Nevada-Yuba-Placer Unit
- Cal Fire Public Information Officer
- Sacramento Fire Department
- Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District
Sacramento has 24 fire stations placed strategically around the city to assist community members in the face of a disaster, and residents can also call 211 or visit them online for information on available resources. Even more resources are available through the county for seniors + people living with disabilities.