Fire Mitigation & Defensible Space

What is Defensible Space? It is a buffer around your home, outbuildings, etc. that has been mitigated to reduce the potential to spread a wildfire. Defensible space, being firewise, improves the chance your home and neighborhood can be saved from a wildfire. By cleaning up and maintaining your property, removing ladder fuels and other combustible object, a fire can be slowed or even stopped before it spreads to your home. Defensible Space also helps protect firefighters and provides them a place to work. Creating defensible space around homes is a critical aspect of protecting mountain communities.

Easy Things to Do

  • Rake up dead grass, pine needles, leaves, pine cones and dispose of them
  • Remove dead or dying trees and bushes
  • Keep the grass yard and fields mowed
  • Trim low hanging tree branches, 6-foot clearance to the ground
  • Trim any branches that are within 10 feet of your house, building
  • Trim any branches that hang over your roof or near your chimney
  • Clean out roof gutters
  • Clean out under decks and around gardens
  • Move wood piles at least 50 feet away from your home
  • Remove old junk piles that contain flammable Materials

Next Steps

  • Select fire-safe landscaping, fire-resistant plants
  • Use synthetic fire-resistant materials for decks and fencing
  • Purchase fire-resistant patio furniture
  • Cut down trees based on spacing and the slope of the property
  • Make sure driveways and property are accessible for Fire Trucks to enter, turn around and exit

Other Sources

Materials Available at El Paso County Community Events

Wildfire Workshops: May 5 & 12, 2018

These workshops provide training educational and training opportunities for homeowners and community groups to learn to evaluate and improve wildfire risk on individual properties and common spaces, and build and maintain neighborhood wildfire risk reduction plans and projects. Below are links to download materials that are available at the El Paso County Office of Emergency Management booth during these dates.

Materials

Videos