How you can make your house a defensible space from wildfires

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As we approach wildfire season, Matthew McFarland with the Unified Fire Authority came by to help people think about their property and what they can do to make it a defensible space. 

Matthew talks about what poses a risk, and what people in the suburban neighborhoods can do to be aware and prepare for fire season.

For those of us who live in neighborhoods, as opposed to agricultural or equestrian areas, it may feel like we aren’t the ones at risk.

Wildfire potential is everywhere, not just in the foothills and peripheral areas, or urban interfaces as we call it.

Salt Lake, Utah, and Davis counties have many isolated open areas with potential for fire spread and threat to structures. Watch the video to see how Photo 3 shows a prone area near homes, and Photo 2 shows it after an actual fire. This is right here in the central Salt Lake County Urban environment.

So, what can homeowners and tenants do to prepare?

Simple clearing of what we call “ladder fuels” will greatly reduce the risk of spread.

This is a great time of year to do simple yard maintenance that can potentially save your home.

During peak season, when red flag warnings are in effect, winds can carry embers great distances. Once the fire is active it is often too late to do the work necessary to save a property, if the owner hasn’t already done the leg work. The potential for structure fires to turn into consequential wildfires is a real concern and can occur in any part of Utah’s residential areas in the photo down below.

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