Utah (ABC4 News) – The actions you take now may be your best defense when it comes to protecting your home during the 2020 wildfire season.
Since April 30th, two wildfires have already sparked in both Davis and Wasatch Counties.
“This time of year you can’t be playing with fire,” said Tony Tibbits.
Tibbits lives in Midway near the area where the Saddle Fire in Wasatch County has been burning.
Investigators say a juvenile intentionally set the fire and three others in that area.
As a result, some nearby residents were temporarily evacuated. Tibbits wasn’t one of them, but was still worried about the potential outcome.
“It’s concerning because it’s so close to the neighborhoods,” he said.
As crews prepare for what maybe a busy wildfire season, officials say now is the time for you to evaluate any possible fire threat near your home.
“Make sure you’re keeping the ground fuel trimmed down,” said Matthew McFarland, United Fire Authority Spokesman. “What we call the later fuels, the stuff that’s as tall as you and me. You want to make sure your house is clear about 35-40 plus feet all the way around. You don’t want to store wood underneath your deck. Make sure you have defensible space, and especially near a wild area where there’s small drainage or an empty field.”
McFarland says right now areas in the Foothills in Salt Lake County are drying out. The mountains are expected to follow.
He explains the potential reality if you don’t take the proper precautions.
“A house that doesn’t do any work, might require five to 10 hours of saw work for us to be able to protect it. That’s just not a reasonable use of resources.”
When it comes to your home fire preparations, McFarland says it’s also important to consider long-term planning like looking at your home’s construction to see if there are any threats that need to be eliminated.
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