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By Meghaan Evans NRECA


G


rass, brush and forest ⇒ res are oŌ en considered to be one of the most powerful


natural disasters known to man, and as our area is already seeing this year, spring and summer seasons are Ɵ mes to exercise extra cauƟ on.


The years 2012 and 2013 saw over 114,000 ⇒ res burn more than 13 million acres of U.S. land. In the past 28 years, over 254 million acres of land have burned, and tens-of-billions of dollars have been spent in Federal Suppression Fire⇒ ghƟ ng Costs. In California, ⇒ res raged so intensely that they could actually be seen from space.


While some ⇒ res are caused by lightning, nine out of 10 are caused by man. There are measures you can take to prevent ⇒ res from happening, and there are ways to keep you, your family and your


home safe during a ⇒ re. Just follow these helpful Ɵ ps from Firewise.org:


• Clear leaves and other debris from guƩ ers, eaves, porches and decks. This prevents embers from igniƟ ng your home.


• Remove dead vegetaƟ on from under your deck and within 10 feet of the house.


• Remove anything stored underneath decks or porches.


• Screen or box in areas below paƟ os and decks with wire mesh to prevent debris and combusƟ ble materials from accumulaƟ ng.


• Remove ⇓ ammable materials (⇒ rewood stacks, propane tanks, dry vegetaƟ on) within 30 feet


of your home’s foundaƟ on and out buildings, including garages and sheds. If it can catch ⇒ re, don’t let it touch your house, deck or porch.


• Fire can spread to treetops. If you have trees on your property, prune so the lowest branches are 6 to 10 feet from the ground.


• Keep your lawn hydrated and maintained. If it is brown, cut it down to reduce ⇒ re intensity. Dry grass and shrubs are fuel for ⇒ res.


• Don’t let debris and lawn cuƫ ngs linger.


Dispose of these items quickly to reduce fuel for ⇒ re.


• Inspect shingles or roof Ɵ les. Replace or repair those that are loose or missing to prevent ember penetraƟ on.


• Cover exterior aƫ c vents with metal wire mesh no larger than 1/8 inch to prevent sparks from entering the home.


• Enclose under-eave and soĸ t vents or screens with metal mesh to prevent ember entry.


Stay safe this ⇒ re season. For more Ɵ ps and informaƟ on, visit Firewise.org or the NaƟ onal Interagency Fire Center’s website, hƩ p://www.nifc. gov.


4 - NE Connection


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