PLANNING FOR THE WORST CASE
Every community is susceptible to catastrophic incidents and disasters. If a disaster strikes our community, local, state and federal governmental organizations will try to help you; but you also have a responsibility to protect yourself and your family by knowing what to do before, during, and after a catastrophic event.
Even if a disaster does not force you to evacuate, local services may be disrupted so you need to be ready to sustain yourself with extra food, water and supplies. An excellent resource to help you plan can be found at http://www.ready.gov/america/index.html
As the pine beetle epidemic increases, so does the potential for a catastrophic wildfire. This problem cannot be solved by our agency alone, and requires the effort of individuals, governmental agencies, and eventually, Mother Nature. If and when the time comes to combat a significant wildland fire, the District works closely with County State and Federal resources. The District may respond ahead of and in conjunction with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Forest Service to fight fires on federal property. When we can reasonably gain access to these fires and whenever fire might spread to private areas and property, we begin suppression in an attempt to contain them before they become larger and more significant problems.
The time to prepare for wildfire is before smoke stains the horizon and we wonder if our home will survive the marching flames. Home preparation includes creating “defensible space,” or a buffer-zone in which vegetation is manipulated to limit fire’s intensity.
To approaching wildfire, homes constitute more fuel. Utilizing defensible space, we break the continuity between our home and the surrounding vegetation; reducing the likelihood that fire will gobble it up along with the grasses, bushes and trees. Defensible space constitutes but one of several methods to enhance home survivability. For more information or assistance with assessing your risk contact Eagle River Fire Protection District.