Wildfire Safety

With much of the District rural in nature, it is important to minimize the threat of wildfires during the dry season. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and Florida Division of Forestry recommends creating "defensible space" around your home to help protect you from wildfires. By properly maintaining your landscape and allowing at least 30 feet of space around your home, you can reduce potential wildfire hazards.


Each year, landowners should remove all dead vegetation around the home, including removing leaves and needles from the roof. In addition, "ladder fuel" such as tall shrubs and dead vines that can allow a fire to climb to the tops of trees should be removed. It is recommended to provide vertical and horizontal separation between plants to minimize fire jumping from one tree to another. Prune tree brances to 15 feet away from your roof, chimney and siding. Keep flammable vegetation and organic mulches at least 5 feet from your home.


If you have firewood on your property, store it and any flammables, such as gasoline, away from your home and clear a 15-foot area around propane tanks and barbecue grills.


The Forest Service notes that most homes are not actually burned from wildfires, but from low-intensity ground fires that burn through vegetation around the home. Burning embers from a wildfire that is far off can land in flammable vegetation near the home or leaves and needle debris that has accumulated on the roof.


For more information on fire safety and prevention, wildfire current conditions, resource materials and more please visit: Wildland Fire