Idaho State Fire Marshal urges property owners to adopt firewise measures
BOISE ID (July 14, 2016) – A recent fire in Tipanuck, Idaho, resulted in the loss of several acres of private property – including two mobile homes and an outbuilding – and threatened to encroach on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land. In communities without organized fire departments, firewise measures are critical to protecting homes and lives.
“A wind-driven, fast-moving wildfire could destroy the majority of a community without fire protection services,” says Fire Marshal Knute Sandahl. “As we surveyed the damage following the Tipanuck fire, it was evident that numerous homes in the area were not practicing any firewise measures.”
The Tipanuck fire was caused by a short from an electric meter box. Firefighters from the BLM responded and prevented the fire from spreading to their land and other adjoining properties. Fire departments from neighboring communities were called in by the BLM to douse private structures already lost to the fire.
Fire Marshal Sandahl suggests the following fire safety precautions:
• Create green space around homes and buildings of at least 30 feet
• Cut down or remove any dry vegetation within 10 feet of a house or building
• Trim back trees that overhang the house
• Have garden hoses and lawn sprinklers available for immediate use
• Keep combustible materials – anything that can burn – away from homes
• Water plants, trees, and mulch regularly