Protecting Your Home and Family in a Wildfire
About Survivable Space
With all of Montana City located within the Wildland Urban Interface or WUI (the area where structures and other human development meets or intermingles with undeveloped wildland or vegetative fuels, including grassland) it is important homeowners be prepared prior to a wildland fire.
Homeowners who take proactive steps to mitigate the risk of home ignition due to a wildland fire have a better chance of their home surviving the fire than those who do nothing to prepare their property.
The purpose of this information is to provide fire mitigation information so homeowners are able to create a 'survivable space' for their homes. Firewise techniques homeowners utilize include: using fire-resistant plants in their landscaping, thinning trees and brush, building with ignition-resistant materials, and choosing building sites away from slopes. It is the homeowner's responsibility to create 'survivable space.' For more information on 'survivable space' go to FireSafe Montana's Living with Fire or visit firesafemt.org.
Homeowners do not need to cut down all their trees to be "fire safe." Clearing out dead vegetation (including trees and brush killed by beetles and disease) in addition to thinning healthy trees and brush can actual result in an improved aesthetic appearance of the property. Opening up the tree canopy allows for grass and wildflowers to flourish in the sunlight and strengthens the health of remaining trees than in a crowded stand where many trees compete for same amount of soil nutrients and water.
Helena National Forest, which borders the Montana City Fire District, provides a report on the lastest forest health survey, including the mountain pine beetle infestation and how to recognize pine beetle infestation in your own trees. Go to Helena National Forest Website at fs.fed.us
National Fire Protection Association - Wildfire Safety Go to Wildfire Safety at nfpa.org
LA Times Fire Ember Video: Go to LA Times Video at latimes.com
Billings Gazette Article on Embers and Home Losses: Go to Article at billingsgazette.com
Colorado State Univ. Mountain Pine Beetle Information: Go to CSU Mountain Pine Beetle Article at colostate.edu
Other Wildland Fire and Emergency Preparedness Links
FireSafe Montana: firesafemt.org
National Incident Information: www.inciweb.org
US Goverment: Preparing Your Family: www.ready.gov
Red Cross: More on Preparing Your Family: Go to Preparing Your Family at redcross.org
US Small Business Administration: Small Business Preparedness Information: Go to Small Business Preparedness Article at sba.gov