Frost-damaged Vegetation Create Fire Concerns
After several days of cold, dry weather the look of Southwest Florida lawns and roadsides have lost the familiar green having been replaced by the tell tale signs of dead leaves, plants and brush. This has created the ideal environment for brush fires and has firefighters looking to the public to help reduce the danger. It is more important than ever to take precautions to prevent accidental fires. Carelessly discarded cigarettes from car windows have already sparked grass fires. As the humidity level continues to drop and the rainfall for the year under estimated levels, Estero Fire Rescue asks that all residents and visitors to Lee County be cautious during this season. Discard cigarettes in proper containers; never throw them out the window.
Take precautions around your home and create a landscape that is less vulnerable to wildfire. This is most important to those homes located in an area surrounded by dense vegetation. Estero Fire Rescue wants to help you reduce the risk of wildfire damage to your home with a few tips that you can do in a single weekend!
- Get Some Space! ~ Have at least 30 ft. of space surrounding your home that is free of flammable materials
- Prune shrubs and cut back tree branches, especially within 15 ft. of your chimney
- Remove all dead plant materials from around your home including dead leaves, stacked firewood and dry grass
- Plant fire-resistant vegetation that is healthy and green throughout the year
- Prune all trees six to ten feet from the ground
- Keep your roof and gutters free of leaves and pine straw
- Keep your lawn mowed regularly and dispose of cuttings and debris promptly
- Make sure your driveway is at least 14 ft. wide to accommodate firefighting apparatus