Preparing for wildfires – it’s a team effort
As the state continues to endure high temperatures, consumers must prepare for wildfires. The Department of Insurance is doing our part to protect consumers and businesses from wildfires. Last year Commissioner Lara introduced the Safer from Wildfires a ground-up approach to wildfire resilience with three layers of protection — for the structure, the immediate surroundings, and the community.
Wildfire safety is a team effort that starts long before a fire happens. Here are steps you can take right now to be prepared and safer for wildfires:
PREPARE FOR FIRE RISK
Use your smart phone to perform a home inventory to create a record of your belongings and store scans of important documents that you can easily access.
Locate your insurance papers and put them in a safe place or upload to an online location.
Consider comprehensive auto insurance, which can protect your vehicle in the event of wildfire.
Create a plan with your family to evacuate your home should wildfire strike and put together an emergency supply kit.
DOING YOUR PART
One way homeowners can do their part to protect their homes and communities before a fire is implement the actions in the Safer from Wildfires approach. There are 10 actions in total and here are 3 low-cost steps you can take today to protect your home and save on insurance:
Keep embers out - Installing 1/16 to 1/8 inch noncombustible, corrosion-resistant metal mesh screens over attic vents can keep wind-blown embers out of your house.
Clear the first 5 feet -Removing greenery and replacing wood chips with stone or decomposed granite 5 feet around your home prevents fire from getting a foot in the door.
Be safer together - With Firewise USA, communities as small as 8 dwelling units or as big as 2,500 can create an action plan and start being safer together. Firewise USA is a nationally recognized program with proven results, sponsored by the National Fire Prevention Association.
The more you do, the more you can save. Check out the Safer from Wildfires framework for more details
Other steps to do your part:
When directed to evacuate, don’t wait. Be ready to go and know what to do if you become trapped.
Sign up for text alerts about wildfires in your area, and know your community’s emergency response plan, evacuation orders and evacuation centers.
Check in on your friends and family