Jeff Wan, Clayton Mayor
We are approaching wildfire season in California, including Clayton. Residents should be prepared by taking these recommended safety precautions.
While we are surrounded by nature and a beautiful environment, many of these things contribute to an increased risk of wildfire. Before the rainy season starts, look around for those home maintenance projects that help maintain your property and can reduce the risk of fire. Cleaning gutters and making sure they are clear of debris helps drainage and can reduce combustible materials on your property. Consider adding covers to your gutters to prevent the buildup of debris such as leaves and pine needles.
But there is more than just gutter maintenance, though. If your property has a deck or covered porch, consider having five feet of noncombustible defensible space. These areas should be clear of debris, no trees or shrubs and only have noncombustible or ignition-resistant items.
For raised decks, consider having no vegetation of any kind underneath, and avoid using the area for storage.
Furniture on your deck, including pergolas, could also be a source of fuel. Using only non-combustible material for things like furniture, or pergolas is advised.
Within the immediate five feet (the larger the better) of your home, consider keeping the ground clear of debris and containing only noncombustible material. Things like firewood, foliage, boats, or RVs, can all serve as fuel for fire and should be kept away from structures. If you are replacing a fence, consider using noncombustible material where fences attach to your home.
In the event there is a wildfire, have a plan that includes evacuation. For more information, Con Fire (www.cccfpd.org) and Cal Fire has great information at www.readyforwildfire.org including being able to sign up for updates.
Photo credit: Envato.com/anatoliy_gleb