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Tis the season...are you Firewise? Create defensible space

Mosaic Insurance reminds Prescott Homeowners to be Firewise and create defensible space around your homeWe’ve experienced an unusually light amount of rainfall so far this year. That, coupled with the wind, is a combination that puts us at risk for wildfires. Insurance is a safety net in the event of a fire, but as they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Mosaic Insurance is concerned about fire safety and wants to share with homeowners in Prescott the important steps you can take to make your home Firewise.

Your Landscape: The goal is to reduce vegetation that fuels fires. Trees should be carefully spaced and shrubs pruned. Gravel walkways and driveways create “fuel breaks” for added protection. Some highly flammable plants are ornamental junipers, paupon, holly, red cedar, and young pine. Low-growing and low flammability plants are better choices for a Firewise landscape.

Your Construction: Build on a location that is mostly level since fire can spread more quickly on slopes. Use fire resistant or non-combustible materials for your construction. Consider using fire resistant roof materials such as Class A asphalt shingles, slate or clay tile, concrete products, metal, or terra cotta tiles. Double pane windows and tempered glass are more effective heat barriers. Cover exterior attic and under-floor vents with mesh wire screens to prevent sparks from entering the home through vents.

Attached Structures: Wooden Decks are flammable, so it’s extremely important to keep the area around and beneath decks clear of debris, vegetation or other combustible materials. Screen in areas below patios and decks with wire screening as added protection.

Safety Zone: At least 30 feet of space immediately around the home-and as far as 100 to 200 feet depending on surrounding vegetation-should be maintained by removing dead leaves and pine needles, and keeping shrubs pruned. Trim tree limbs so that the lowest branches are 6 to 10 feet above ground. This helps prevent a ground fire from spreading to the treetops. A well maintained “Home Ignition Zone” improves the chances of your home surviving in the event of a wildfire.

Other Firewise Tips: Have at least two ground-level exits, and at least two escape exits in every room-such as a door and a window-to provide a way out. If adding a wooden fence, be sure to use masonry or metal as a protective barrier between the house and fence.

It is of utmost importance that you have a disaster plan in place for your family and pets in case of an emergency. Mosaic Insurance reminds you to take preventative measures to be Firewise and create defensible space around your home in Prescott. If you need to review your homeowners policy, or have other insurance needs, call the professionals at Mosaic Insurance at 928-458-7374.

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