Wildfires are becoming more frequent and more devastating. Take the following actions to reduce your wildfire risk and increase your wildfire resilience, while always following evacuation orders making safety the top priority.
- Invest in upgrades. Consider installing fire shutters, firebreaks, fire-resistant siding, and metal mesh screening over vents and roof repairs.
- Remove plant debris. Dry leaves, grass, needles, and branches fuel fires. Keep your roof and gutters free of plant debris and clear debris from under decks.
- Create noncombustible zones. Create a safety zone around every structure, following CAL FIRE’s guidelines to maintain a defensible space.
- Document your emergency plan. Create a checklist of things to do at each phase of wildfire readiness, so you have a clear action plan to follow.
- Mitigate danger before evacuating. If there is time, close windows, vents, and doors; remove flammable items from windows and away from buildings; and turn off gas, pilot lights, and propane tanks
- Extinguish small fires. Keep fire extinguishers in many locations and train employees to use them. Consider having a water tank or other source of water ready.
- Subscribe to alerts. The sooner you know about the danger, the more steps you can take to protect your property and get out safely. See Ready.gov for information on signing up for alerts.
- Plan your evacuation. Plan two routes out in case one is blocked. Have emergency supplies and a radio available in case anyone is trapped in the building. Run practice drills and conduct training.
- Plan to communicate. Determine how you will keep your team or family informed. Consider using a group text, mobile app, or web page. Keep an updated list of mobile numbers for all team members.
- Get ready to recover. Have a business continuity plan in place so you can get up and running in an alternative location quickly if needed. Check your property insurance and business interruption insurance limits annually.
Speak to one of our trusted personal insurance advisors here at Heffernan Insurance Brokers today for more information on preparing your home.