Katikati Advertiser

Time to get fire ready


As summer approaches, Fire and Emergency wants people living with a risk of wildfire to act nowand protect their homes from the wildfire hazard. This includes people living in rural communitie­s, on lifestyle blocks and near town boundaries or large areas of scrub and bush.

Fire and Emergency wildfire specialist Graeme Still says identifyin­g and removing fire risks around yourhome now will increase your property’s chance of surviving a wildfire.

“Everything within60 metres from your house can determine how safe it will be in a wildfire.

“Focus on any fire hazards in contact with yourhome first. Clear your gutters, get a non-flammable doormat and remove flammable materials like firewood stacked against your home,” says Still.

“Once you’ve made your homesafe, work yourway outwards to the edges of your property and include other buildings and sheds.

“Keep your lawns watered and green— the greener the grass, the less likely it is to burn in a wildfire. Remove long grass, shrubs, twigs and other fuels that are within 10 metres of your home.”

Prune the lower branches on trees within 30 metres of your home to help reduce the intensity and spread of a wildfire.

As well as making your homeand surrounds fire safe, it’s important to ensure firefighte­rs can access your property if there is a fire.

“If we can’t get to you, we can’t help you.”

Makesure your house or Rapid number is easy for emergency services to find and your driveway has clearance for emergency vehicles. Fire trucks need at least 4x4 metres.

i Get more tips on how to keep your home fire safe at https://checkitsal­right.nz/reduce-the-risk/safeguardi­ng-yourproper­ty. Or contact your local Fire and Emergency Area Office for advice on safeguardi­ng your property or planning a burn for land management.

 ??  ?? Act now to protect rural property from awildfire hazard like this one at Pukaki Downs.
Act now to protect rural property from awildfire hazard like this one at Pukaki Downs.

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