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Cal Fire Urges Wildfire Preparedness

It's time to pack your go-bag, learn your evacuation zone and clear defensible space before an emergency situation like a wildfire arises.

Posted: May 8, 2018 8:18 AM
Updated: May 8, 2018 8:37 AM

Paradise, Calif.-- As warmer weather continues this week, we're reminded that fire season is approaching.

If you haven't done so already, according to Cal Fire it's time to make sure you have that defensible space around your home.

That means 30 to 100 feet cleared away from the exterior walls - all the dry and dead brush.

While plants that are green and healthy are fire resistant, check beneath them for dead leaves that have shed and collected.

"A lot of times it's a stroke of luck but it's improved if you have defensible space and if you've done those things we've talked about like cleaned up around your home and roof, it give firefighters the ability to defend your home if they're able to get in there," said Division Chief David Hawks.

Clearing space does not mean you need to have a barren yard - you can fill in the gaps with fire - resistant plants like succulents or even a well-watered lawn.

And if you do need to evacuate your home, shut the doors and windows and remove thin curtains and furniture away from an openings if you have time.

Having an emergency plan and go-bag is important no matter what time of year or where you live, and as wildfire season approaches, Hawks urges that we all pack that bag and make a plan.

Your 'go-bag' should have enough food and water for 48 hours for each person in your family.

You also want a two-day supply of any medications, important documents that are difficult to replace, like medical information, identification and tax information.

"We get into May, June when we could have significant fires - that's the time to have a full tank of gas, your go-bag packed. To know your zone and your plan so that if your number is called, you can be ready to get in your car and leave safely," said Hawks.

If you live in a rural area in Butte County, you have a designated zone.

In the coming weeks, Butte County is launching a site that allows you to enter in your address and immediately learn your zone, but your best bet is to go online now and know your zone before a wildfire strikes.

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Toasty temperatures are ahead for your Thursday, but some modest relief from the heat is on the way. Fire danger concerns are on the rise as the potential for thunderstorms returns in your Friday and Saturday forecast.
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