Florida's Forest Service division is helping homeowners prepare for the dry season as ash from a wildfire can travel up to two miles away from where it started.
Todd Chlanda with the forest division says they use 'Firewise' from the National Protection Association to warn homeowners about hazards around the home.
Their home safety checklist:
- Clean roofs and gutters of dead leaves, debris and pine needles that could catch embers
- Replace or repair any loose or missing shingles
- Screen or box in areas below patios and decks with mesh to prevent debris and combustible materials from accumulating.
For Firewise recommendations you should also create a fuel free area within three to five feet of your home's perimeter.
You should remove dead leaves, needles, shrubs and tree limbs.
Chlanda recommends rock used as a barrier around your home, but if you have mulch keep it moist.
Green grass is also best because it means there's moisture in the ground.
Other tips around your home:
- Use grass and driveways as fuel breaks from your home
- Use faux brick and stone around the exterior.
- Use groups of potted plants that include succulents and other drought resistant vegetation.
- Use of pavers and rock make good fuel breaks
- Make sure wooden fences aren't attached to homes