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white spacer Maintaining your Defensible Space  
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Your home is located in a forest that is dynamic and constantly changing. Trees and shrubs continue to grow, plants die or are damaged, new plants establish and grow, needles and leaves drop to the ground, forming duff. Like other parts of your home, defensible space requires maintenance. Use the following checklist each year to determine if additional work or maintenance is necessary.
white spacer Defensible Space and Fire Wise Annual Checklist  
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  • Trees and shrubs are properly thinned and pruned within the defensible space. Slash from thinning is disposed.

  • Roof and gutters are clear of debris.

  • Branches overhanging the roof and chimney are removed.

  • Chimney screens are in place and in good condition

  • Grass and weeds are mowed to a low height.

  • An outdoor water supply is available, complete with a hose and nozzle that can reach all parts of the house.

  • Fire extinguishers are checked and in working order.

  • The driveway is wide enough. Clearance of trees and branches is adequate for fire and emergency equipment. (Check with your local fire department.)

  • Road signs and your name and house number are posted and easily visible.

  • There is an easily accessible tool storage area with rakes, hoes, axes and shovels for use in case of fire.

  • You have practiced family fire drills and your fire evacuation plan.

  • Your escape routes, meeting points and other details are known and understood by all family members.

  • Attic, roof, eaves, and foundation vents are screened and in good condition. Stilt foundations and decks are enclosed, screened or walled up.

  • Trash and debris accumulations are removed from the defensible space.

  • A checklist for fire safety needs inside the home is available from your local fire department.


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