Wildfires can spread quickly. You can protect your property before a fire starts by taking steps to FireSmart your home. These measures don’t guarantee fire damage won’t happen so make sure your home is insured.
The FireSmart Homeowner’s Manual identifies changes you can make to help protect your home from wildfire.
Create a fire safety zone around your home
Fire safety zone 1: Within 10 metres of your home
Make sure the area within 10 metres of your home is free of all materials that could easily ignite.
- remove flammable shrubs, trees, deadfall and woodpiles;
- keep propane tanks and combustibles out of this area;
- keep your grass mowed and watered; and
- clean your roof and gutters regularly.
Fire safety zone 2: 10 to 30 metres around your home
- Reduce fuels by thinning and pruning vegetation and trees. This slows the spread of fire.
- Space trees at least 3 metres apart.
- Prune all branches within 2 metres of the ground.
Fire safety zone 3: 30 to 100 metres around your home
- Thin the area so fires will be of low intensity and more easily extinguished.
- Keep fire-resistant deciduous trees.
- Manage the canopy to reduce the potential for a crowning fire.
Use fire-safe building materials in your home
- Roof: Metal, asphalt or a Class A fire retardant treatment for shakes are most effective.
- Exterior walls: Stucco, metal, brick and concrete fire resistant materials are most effective. Logs and heavy timbers are less effective. Wood and vinyl siding offer little protection.
- Windows: Tempered glass has good resistance to damage by fire. Double pane windows provide moderate protection and single pane provides no protection.
- Eaves and soffits: Closed-in designs are better than those left open or unscreened.
- Chimney: Make sure your chimney meets current Yukon building code requirements and screen with approved spark arrestors.
Burn barrel fire safety
Never leave a burn barrel unattended.
- Keep the barrel away from buildings and other combustible sources.
- Keep a wire mesh screen cover on your burn barrel.
- Make sure your barrel is staked down and wired to a metal surface.