How to Prepare Your Home for Wildfire Season
Contrary to popular belief, Los Angeles is not actually a desert. But given we Angelinos enjoy roughly 15 inches of rain each year, and that most of it falls during the winter months, it is fair to say LA is a pretty dry place to call home. While that has its benefits (hey, Dodgers games are seldom at risk of a rain out), it also means we find ourselves at risk for property damage caused by wildfires, particularly during the dry summer months.
Like the Boy Scouts, however, Los Angeles area homeowners can "be prepared" for wildfire season and protect their homes from fire, smoke, soot and even damage caused by the water to put out fires.
Create a "defensible space" around your home
Cal Fire recommends two zones that together would slow or even stop the spread of a wildfire while protecting the firefighters defending your property.
Zone 1 is roughly a 30 foot radius around all structures where you should clear any and all dead vegetation while keeping other plants and trees well trimmed and separated from flammable objects such as furniture, play structures or wood piles.
Zone 2 extends to 100 feet out and likewise requires the regular maintenance of grass, shrubs and trees in an effort to mitigate the rapid advance of flames and reduce the fuel available to stray sparks floating on the wind.
Have an evacuation plan
Once fire threatens your home, you may have the option or even be mandated to evacuate the area. Having a wildfire evacuation plan can help ensure you and your family stay safe. In advance of wildfire season, create or review your plan by establishing an emergency meeting location, assembling a supply kit and learning how to shut off gas, electric and water mains.
Use fire resistant materials for home improvement projects
From insulation made with eco-friendly materials such as cellulose to decks built with composite or pressure-treated wood, there are many ways to improve your home that enhance both its value and its resistance to fire damage.
When facing the threat of wildfires, your safety and the safety of your family is paramount. But remember, should wildfires cause damage to your home, whether from the fire itself, the soot and smoke or even water damage from fighting the flames, SERVPRO of North Hollywood has highly-trained and certified technicians who can respond quickly, 24/7/365, to emergencies around the communities of North Hollywood, Universal City, Toluca Lake and Los Angeles.