Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam and the Florida Forest Service are highlighting the dangers associated with wildfire and reminding Floridians to prioritize wildfire prevention and preparation during National Fire Prevention Week, Oct. 8-14.
“Following one of the worst wildfire seasons in years, it’s vital that Floridians are prepared to keep homes, property and wildlife safe from wildfire,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam. “Fire Prevention Week is a great opportunity for citizens to establish a fire prevention plan.”
Several measures that Floridians have already taken this year to prepare for hurricanes, such as creating a “go kit” and evacuation plan, are useful in case of wildfire. Wildfire danger levels usually increase throughout Florida after hurricane season concludes due to drying debris from the storms.
The 2017 Fire Prevention Week theme, “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!” is a helpful reminder to formulate a fire prevention plan for both inside and outside the home. These tips can serve as the foundation for a fire prevention plan:
- Keep dry and dead debris away from homes, fences and decks.
- Keep roof and gutters free from debris such as pine needles, leaves, and branches.
- Keep flammable materials like gasoline and firewood away from homes.
- Have 30 feet of defensible space around homes and sheds.
“As you create a fire escape plan for the interior of your home, fire preparedness and prevention is equally critical for your home exterior and yard,” said State Forester Jim Karels.
Florida Forest Service offices will host and participate in community events across the state to raise awareness of fire prevention. For more information, consumers should contact their local wildfire mitigating specialist.
The Florida Forest Service, a division of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, manages more than 1 million acres of state forests and provides forest management assistance on more than 17 million acres of private and community forests. The Florida Forest Service is also responsible for protecting homes, forestland and natural resources from the devastating effects of wildfire on more than 26 million acres. Learn more at FloridaForestService.com.