Lehigh firefighters urge extra caution during dry season | News, Sports, Jobs
The Lehigh Acres Fire and Rescue District urges all residents to take extra precautions over the next few months – part of Lee County’s dry season. The district is seeing an increase in bushfires and “Red Flag Days” due to the extremely dry weather and heat. These types of conditions are the perfect recipe for quick-start bushfires.
“Our crews were out last Saturday, May 22nd, battling a large bushfire that spread from the outskirts of Hendry County to Lehigh. The fire was caused by an unauthorized burn. This type of fire could have been prevented if the person (s) had made a wiser decision not to get burned on such days. “ said Katie Heck, spokeswoman for the Lehigh Acres Fire Control and Rescue District.
On the same Saturday, another bush fire broke out in the immediate vicinity of houses, so close that an evacuation was ordered.
“Almost two hectares were burned by a campfire that burned. Sometimes people think they have put out the flames, but there are still burning ashes burning below. Our crews had to work for over an hour to get the fire under control and endanger nearby houses. “ Heck said.
In addition to maintaining a defensible space around the home, fire officers want the community to understand that due to weather conditions, they must now exercise extra caution. This means avoiding the following activities:
– Avoid using fireworks
– Avoid controlled burns
– Be extra careful when using a fire pit and make sure it is completely extinguished
– Cover outdoor grills to prevent ashes from igniting near bushes and grass
– Avoid idling vehicles over high grass areas
Homeowners also need to remove sources of fuel from the home – known as those “Home ignition zone”. Removing this component can protect homes from embers and radiant heat from forest fires.
There are simple things residents can do in an afternoon or over a weekend, and research shows your home can survive wildfire.
Here are some quick and easy projects that can make a huge difference to the security of your home:
– Remove pine needles, dead leaves and anything that can burn from roof lines, gutters, decks and fence lines.
– Cut back any shrubs or branches that are closer than 1.5 m to the house.
– Remove any landscaping mulch touching your home – if it is flammable it should be 1.5 meters away.
– Remove anything that can burn within 9 m of your house, such as piles of wood, spare wood, parked vehicles or boats. These are items that can act as a great source of fuel.
For more information, see the LAFCRD website, lehighfd.com.