All wildfires need fuel to burn, typically in the form of dry vegetation, as often occurs in forests, grasslands, and cured wheat fields. Tragically, some wildfires also kill people and destroy homes, vehicles, and other personal property.
If you live near or within a forest, grassland, or wheat field, there are some actions you can take to minimize your vulnerability to wildfires.
If you are a homeowner, the first defense against wildfire is to create and maintain a defensible space around your home. Defensible space is the area around a home or other structure where fuels and vegetation are treated, cleared or reduced to slow the spread of wildfire.
Creating wildfire-defensible zones also reduces the chance of a structure fire spreading to neighboring homes or the surrounding forest. Defensible space also provides room for firefighters to do their jobs when fighting a wildfire.
During periods of extreme fire danger in forests and rangelands:
You should avoid being in areas where you might become trapped by a wildfire.
You should avoid the use of matches or anything else which could ignite a fire.
Make sure that hot parts of motorized equipment, such as mufflers, are not allowed to come in contact with dry grasses or other potentially flammable material. If you become trapped or cut off by a wildfire seek shelter in areas with little or no fuel such as rock slide areas or lakes.
This article is provided by the Colorado National Weather Service.