It’s no secret that our last winter in Colorado stood out as dryer than usual. The lack of rain increases the risk of wildfires during the rest of the year, which could threaten your home. What is less well-known are the following steps, which you can take this spring to mitigate any fire danger.
Rely on Fire-Resistant Materials for Your Home
If you’re building your home or replacing parts of its structure, use fire-resistant materials. The longer a fire takes to destroy your home, the more chance you have of you and your family escaping to safety. For example, you will eventually have to replace your roof, which you can do with concrete shingles. This material protects against the spread of fire and takes a long time before it’s load-bearing ability is compromised by fire. Another good material is stucco, which is simply Portland cement that has been decoratively enhanced. It covers structural materials, such as wood, increasing their ability to resist blazes.
Develop a Safety Zone Around Your Property
A safety zone is an empty area that a fire cannot cross because there is nothing to burn. You can create one around your property by eliminating brush, bushes, trees, plant waste, and pine needles. Be sure to remove any branches that hang over your home. A zone of at least 100 feet deep is helpful, but 200 to 500 feet is also recommended.
Check Your Smoke Detectors and Fire Extinguishers
Without detectors, a fire or the conditions that produce it may remain unnoticed until it’s too late for you to escape it. So make sure your smoke detectors are working correctly by pressing their test buttons at least twice a year during the switch to and from Daylight Savings Time. At least once a month, inspect your fire extinguishers to make sure that they are easily accessible and the seals are holding. Check that the pressure indicator is still within the operating range. If you discover anything wrong, contact your local fire department for specific advice on what to do.
Know the Location of Your Access to Fire-Fighting Water
Although you may take every step to prevent a fire emergency, flames may still arrive to burn your home. In that case, the best defense against a total conflagration is water. Make sure you know where your access to water is, including all nearby fire hydrants, water storage tanks, community water systems, swimming pools, exterior faucets, and garden hoses. You may need to use these sources to help fight the blaze. You can also point them out to first responders so they can battle the fire immediately.
Keep Your Entrance Road Accessible and Your Address Visible
You want firefighters to reach your home quickly during a conflagration. So make sure the road to it is cleared of debris or personal vehicles. Your street address should be clearly visible to anyone arriving down the road, so put it high enough that it’s not blocked by parked cars and illuminate it at night.
For more information on how to keep your home safe from fires or to insure against such disasters, please contact us at Kyle Insurance Group - Affordable American Insurance.