As most of you probably know, California has been ravaged by fires this Summer.
As most of you probably know, California has been ravaged by fires this Summer. As I write this, one of my friends awaits evacuation notice at her Southern California home, and several others are keeping a close watch on fire patterns in their area. Fire scares me — it is erratic and unpredictable and frighteningly fast. And while I can understand why some homeowners are reluctant to leave their homes, in the end, your home is just a house. It's the nonmaterial things you fill it with — namely your family, pets, and memories — that make it truly a home. This is why I urge readers to listen to firefighters' warnings, and to leave their homes if a mandatory evacuation is issued. Your life is much more important than any piece of property, no matter how much you love it.
Here are some smart pointers from the City of Napa, California's fire safety page:
- Maintain a "defensible" space around your home by clearing all flammable vegetation a minimum of 30 feet around all structures.
- Clear dead leaves and branches to leave widely spaced ornamental shrubbery and trees.
- Clean all needles and leaves from the roof, eaves, rain gutters, and yard.
- Trim tree limbs within 10 feet of your chimney and trim all dead limbs hanging over your house or garage.
- Cover your chimney outlet or flue with a spark arresting half-inch mesh screen.
To see the rest of the tips, read more