Wildfire Awareness: Preparedness and Evacuations

AUSTIN – Wildland fires pose a threat throughout Texas, especially when dry weather conditions combine with high winds and extreme temperatures.

Whether you live near open grassland, in a suburban area on the edge of town or in a forested area, fire can threaten your home. When weather conditions make wildland fires more likely, take the following precautions:

• Keep fire fighting tools handy, such as: ladder long enough to reach
the roof, shovel, rake and buckets.
• Place connected garden hoses on all sides of the house for emergency use.
• Know all emergency exits from your house.
• Learn all routes leading out of your neighborhood.

As fires actually approach, take the following actions:
• Park your car facing the direction of escape.
• Shut off gas at the meter. Only a qualified professional can safely turn the gas back on.
• Turn off propane tanks.
• Place combustible patio furniture inside.
• Seal vents with pre-cut plywood or commercial seals.
• Wet down or remove shrubs within 15 feet of your residence.
• Place lawn sprinklers on roof and near above-ground fuel tanks. Wet down the roof.
• Close windows, vents, doors, blinds and non combustible window coverings. Remove flammable drapes and curtains.
• Close interior doors and windows to prevent drafts.

If advised to evacuate, do so immediately. Choose a route away from the fire hazard and be alert to changes in the speed and direction of fire and smoke.

For more information on fire danger and advisories, see the Texas Forest Service Web site at: http://texasforestservice.tamu.edu


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