DNR offers landowner’s tips for spring fire season

Friday, April 24th, 2009 at 5:51 am

With more than 300 wildfires already reported this spring, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is offering landowners some ideas for making their home and property less susceptible to fire.

What landowners do to their structure, property access, home site and fire hazards around their property can determine how well firefighters can defend their homes.

Here are some fire safety tips:

* Widen driveways to at least 12 feet and prune branches overhanging the driveway so there is an overhead clearance of 14 feet.

* Move firewood piles outside the home defensible zone of30 feet.

* Clean leafs and needles that accumulate in foundation planting, next to buildings and upper decks.

* Consider less flammable materials such as brick, stone and metal for roofing and siding when updating a home.

* Before burning leaves and debris, consider alternatives like composting.

* Make sure recreational fires are in a fire-safe pit or container and completely extinguished before leaving.

* If a wildfire starts or comes near your property call 911 and let the professionally trained firefighters battle the blaze. There is one fatality for about every 1,000 wildfires in Minnesota.

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