The sweltering heat shouldn’t be your biggest concern this summer. Especially if you live near forested or grassland areas, you should brace yourself for wildfires.
Due to the fact that summer falls in the wildfire season of June through August, the hotter and drier conditions contribute to the risk of wildfire outbreaks. Wildfires can occur almost anywhere, and they are alarmingly on the rise in countries such as the United States, Canada, and Australia. According to the US National Park Service, 85% of wildfires in the country are caused by human activity, such as when dry vegetation is accidentally ignited by carelessly thrown cigarettes or unattended campfires in woods.
Wildfires can destroy entire communities and result in billions of dollars in damage, to say nothing of the serious health effects they cause. There are many health effects caused by smoke particles from wildfires, and even people who stay indoors are at risk when they are exposed to them. Smoke from wildfires can cause severe issues like breathing difficulties, coughing, dizziness, chest pain, and even loss of consciousness.
No matter where you live, a wildfire outbreak can occur – whether it’s near a forest, in a campground, or in your neighbor’s backyard. Start preparing your home for wildfire season now to avoid being caught unprepared when a catastrophe strikes.
Ensure you eliminate the cause of wildfires within your vicinity.
Wildfire breakouts cannot often be controlled, so think about how to prevent having one happen. The best way to prevent a wildfire outbreak is to get rid of the common causes of wildfires within your area and the threats that are within your home.
- Remove all dry leaves, debris, and flammable objects within 30 feet of your house.
- Clear your roof surfaces as well and keep them free of dry leaves and other debris at all times.
- Cleaning the chimneys should be done twice a year. Keep the spark arrestors in good condition to keep sparks and embers from landing on the roof or on combustible material on the ground to start a fire.
- Take down any curtains or flammable drapes that are hanging outside the house.
- Don’t smoke, and ask those who do to put out their cigarettes before disposing of them properly
In case of a wildfire, make sure your indoor space is ready.
There is a possibility that you may not be able to leave your home right away during a wildfire. Prepare your home so that you and your family are protected from the health risks that a wildfire outside poses.
- Choose a room that is large enough for your entire family and is completely sealed off from the outside air. A space like this must have functional windows and doors that can be completely closed.
- Install a high-efficiency HVAC filter that will filter the toxic fumes and substances coming into your home.
- Use air conditioners, evaporative coolers, and fans to keep your indoor environment cool.
- Keep an eye on indoor air quality. When you have real-time air quality data, you can quickly address any issues that may arise.
Make sure your house is wildfire-resistant
A crucial part of putting your home in a wildfire-proof state is ensuring its structural stability. Follow these steps to make sure your house is made with the right materials to protect it from wildfires:
- Replace the roof with materials like composition, metal, clay, or tile and fill in any gaps between the roof decking and covering to stop embers or ashes from catching.
- Cover all vent openings with 1/16-inch to 1/8-inch metal mesh for vents. Avoid fiberglass or plastic mesh as they may melt and burn.
- Install screens in all windows to lessen exposure to ember or ash and exposure to radiant heat as well.
- Hardening your home. (2019, May 16). Ready for Wildfire.
- Wildfire causes and evaluations (U.S. National Park Service). (n.d.). Retrieved June 20, 2022, from
- Wildfires. (n.d.). Ready.Gov. Retrieved June 20, 2022, from https://www.ready.gov/wildfires