Residents and firefighters in Florida must be vigilant year-round for potential wildfires. There is no particular wildfire “season” in Florida.
There are conditions which make forested areas more susceptible to ignition.
The Florida Forest Service, along with other local, state, and federal agencies, monitor weather, humidity, drought, wind, and natural fuel conditions in an effort to predict when fires are more likely to occur, as well as warn the public and the first responders.
Wildfires consume hundreds of homes in the United States every year. Studies show that 80 percent of these homes could have been saved if owners had followed a few fire-wise safety practices. Fire departments all over the state use every means possible to protect lives, homes, and property from the ravages of wildfire. But, it is important to remember, the number of firefighters and firefighting equipment is limited; not every home will be saved in a major wildfire.
There are a few basic measures you can take to make you, your home, and property better prepared for an approaching wildfire. Here’s a list of suggestions:
- Encourage community leadership to embrace the concepts of a “Firewise” community.
- Create a defensible zone between your home and the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI).
- Take steps to mitigate fuel around your property.
- Harden your home to prevent fire from entering the structure. Pay particular attention to the roof, eaves, vents, walls, decks, windows, and doors.
Get prepared for wildfire before it strikes by following Ready, Set, Go!
- Be Ready: Create and maintain defensible space and harden your home against flying embers.
- Get Set: Prepare your family and home ahead of time for the possibility of having to evacuate.
- Be Ready to GO: Take the evacuation steps necessary to give your family and home the best chance of surviving a wildfire.