How FireSmart is Your Home? The ICLR Releases New Study Results.

fire-89353_1280Recently this month, the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction (ICLR) published a research paper that focused on the fire risk of reconstructed Canadian homes following a fire disaster. In the study, 445 homes at two key post-fire sites were rated and compared for fire hazards based on official FireSmart Canada guidelines. FireSmart is a wildfire risk awareness program established by Partners in Protection, a multidisciplinary nonprofit association dedicated to wildfire safety and protection in Canada.

FireSmart works by facilitating networks of homeowners, fire departments, industry companies, and government officials through partnerships to reduce the threat of wildfire in their communities. Seven foundational disciplines are at the heart of FireSmart, which are Education, Vegetation Management, Legislation and Planning, Development Considerations, Interagency Cooperation, Emergency Planning, and Cross Training. It is through these key disciplines that FireSmart strives to promote wildfire safety and awareness to the public.

To accomplish this goal, FireSmart developed a set of guidelines for community members to follow for their homes to be FireSmart safe-approved. These guidelines were used by the ICLR to review the homes in their new research study. Homeowners can see the report’s results by clicking here.

Is Your Home FireSmart Safe?

Concerned about wildfires in your area? Homeowners can take action and make their homes FireSmart safe by doing the following things:

  • Get Educated – As the saying goes, knowledge is power for residents who are well informed about wildfires. FireSmart’s website provides a wealth of informational materials to get started with.
  • Maintain a FireSmart Landscape – There are many things homeowners can do to reduce the fire hazards in their yards while preserving beautiful landscaping, such as selecting fire-resistant species and clearing excess brush. A forester or arborist can help you in this area.
  • Construct your Home with FireSmart Approved Materials – A FireSmart home is a safer home. Whether you’re building new or planning to remodel, find out which FireSmart approved materials are available and use as much of it as possible to lower your fire risk. It’s worth the effort!
  • Farms can be FireSmart, too – If you have a farm or a lot of acreage, don’t forget to make it FireSmart safe. Cutting the grass, allowing livestock to graze, and maintaining fences properly are good practices for fire safety in these places.
  • Be Prepared for Emergencies – It never hurts to be prepared. Planning wildfire emergencies before they occur can save invaluable time and lives when disaster strikes.
  • Consider Starting a FireSmart Community – Want to do more to prevent wildfires? You can establish a recognized FireSmart Community in your neighborhood with a little extra help from FireSmart.

Though no one wants to see wildfire damage in their home, it’s good to know that homeowner’s insurance covers fire damage in many cases. To find out how your insurance policy would work in a wildfire incident, you can contact our team anytime at DLIB. And remember, stay safe and be FireSmart!
Referenced Sources:

CanadianUnderwriter.ca
ICLR Wildfire Report 2015
FireSmart Canada Website
DLIB Website Blog

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