A  program is being launched in the Comox Valley this summer, to help people protect their homes from wildfires. 

FireSmart is a partnership between the Comox Valley Regional District and K’ómoks First Nation, and will provide information, education and activities.

“Wildfires are a part of life and with drier summers, these natural events become a greater risk,” explains Doug Chinnery, Hornby Island Fire Chief and FireSmart Trainer. 

“FireSmarting your property doesn’t have to be expensive. Many things can be done for free by the property owner. Following the simple FireSmart principles can help protect your home and property.”

This summer, you can learn more about how to FireSmart your property by following a few of these tips:

  • Clean under your deck to remove any combustible material. Establish a 1.5 metre non-combustible zone around the perimeter of the house and deck;
  • Clean and maintain gutters and roofs. Keep decks and balconies clear of leaves and debris;
  • A mowed lawn is a fire-resistant lawn. Grasses shorter than 10 centimetres in height are less likely to burn intensely;
  • Have a wildfire evacuation plan and make sure everyone in your household knows what to do;
  • Add non-combustible three  millimetre screens to external vents (except dryer vents);
  • Hold sheds and other structures to the same standards as your home;
  • Relocate propane tanks 10-30 metres from your home, and keep combustible vegetation a minimum of 10 metres from propane tanks;
  • Move firewood and lumber 10-30 metres away from home;
  • FireSmart doesn’t mean that your trees have to be cut down. Keeping them spaced and pruned is often sufficient;
  • Reduce the flammability of your landscaping and plant wildfire resistant vegetation.

This program is funded by a Community Resiliency Investment grant.

You can find a link to the program here.

You can download the FireSmart app for your mobile device and learn more about the program by clicking here. 

To receive a free FireSmart evaluation call your local fire department.