MySafe:Riverside

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Get Ready

It starts with a plan. includes knowing how and when to evacuate, how to harden your home, the value of defensible space, and the benefits of being part of a California Fire Safe Council and an NFPA Firewise USA community. There’s a lot to it. And we’re here to help with every step.

Most people aren't prepared for a wildfire

Even with so many dangerous and deadly wildfires happening each year in California, many people don’t have a plan. Even those in high risk WUI areas often have no knowledge of how to protect their loved ones or property. The time to start is now. And the first step is gaining knowledge. Let’s begin.
 
Wildfires become destructive and deadly because of three environmental factors.

Fuel

Topography

Weather

In many areas, wildfires are a natural element of nature, and are important to the ecosystem and natural evolution of forests and grasslands. Our communities have built homes in places where wildfires occur, and whether those homes are 80 years old or 80 days old, they are within the “wildland urban interface” (WUI) and at risk of being destroyed by wildfires.

MySafe:Riverside is here to help!

You’re not helpless. Here are steps you can take TODAY!

  • Participate in the Riverside Wildfire Alliance (see form below)
  • Get Notified – sign up for RIVco Ready and/or other alerts
  • Make a wildfire plan (prepare, survive, recover)
  • Build a wildfire GO kit
  • Create a family “communications” plan
  • Create defensible space around your home
  • Harden your home
  • Join a group of other homeowners to share wildfire preparedness information
  • Practice your plan
  • Insure your home and property

The miracle on Maui

The disastrous, deadly wildfire that tore through the Lahaina community on Maui in the summer of 2023 destroyed nearly everything in its path to the sea. But one house survived, earning the name “the miracle on Maui.” But it wasn’t a miracle – it was well-thought-out preparation. The home was modified to protect it from adverse ocean weather conditions and termites. But those renovations actually “hardened” the home, protecting it from the firestorm that destroyed everything around it. Some of the changes that were made included:

  • Heavy gauge metal roof
  • Vegetation clearance around the home
  • Landscaping using river stones
  • Exterior walls made of concrete

We’re not saying everyone should replace their home with a concrete and metal structure. But we are saying there are lessons to be learned from this house’s building materials and landscaping choices.

The disastrous, deadly wildfire that tore through the Lahaina community on Maui in the summer of 2023 destroyed nearly everything in its path to the sea. But one house survived, earning the name “the miracle on Maui.” But it wasn’t a miracle – it was well-thought-out preparation. The home was modified to protect it from adverse ocean weather conditions and termites. But those renovations actually “hardened” the home, protecting it from the firestorm that destroyed everything around it. Some of the changes that were made included:

  • Heavy gauge metal roof
  • Vegetation clearance around the home
  • Landscaping using river stones
  • Exterior walls made of concrete

We’re not saying everyone should replace their home with a concrete and metal structure. But we are saying there are lessons to be learned from this house’s building materials and landscaping choices.

Get Connected!

One of the most basic wildfire preparedness actions is to be alerted in the event of a wildfire – or any disaster. Riverside County and various cities within the county have options for notifying people in the event of a wildfire or other disaster. Two existing options include RIVco Ready, the county’s alerting system, and Riverside Alerts, the City of Riverside’s alerting system. Check with your specific city for additional information, but consider joining at least the county’s alerting solution:

Save Your Home Today!

Find the best solution for insurance discount qualifications, and home resilience requirements

Harden your home

There are a number of ways you can improve the structure you live in – reducing the threat from approaching flames and heat. Often, the first step is doing a bit of research. The Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) has developed some scientific and proven advice on how to harden a home against wildfire.

Make a Kit

Having an “emergency” or GO bag/kit is nothing new to Californians who have prepared for years for the next big earthquake. As wildfires continue to grow and become more destructive, that “kit” with a few modifications can become just as valuable for wildfire readiness. Do you have a kit?

Defend your property

Wildfires will happen. And when they do, chances are, they’ll be worse than those in years past. Of the 20 most destructive wildfires in California’s recorded history (as measured by the number of buildings destroyed), 13 of them have occurred since 2017. Combined, these fires destroyed nearly 40,000 structures, killed 148 people, and reduced millions of acres to ash. By establishing a “buffer zone” between your home and the surrounding environment, you can increase the chance of your home surviving a wildfire – and you can also provide firefighters a safer place to position themselves when performing structural defensive operations ahead of a wildfire.

Check out this list of vendors who may be able to assist you:

Attend a Riverside Wildfire Alliance Virtual Town Hall

Every month, MySafe:Riverside hosts a virtual town hall. These meetings are an excellent way to stay on top of wildfire news in Riverside County. You’ll hear from subject matter experts in all things wildfire, from topography in your community, to inside knowledge of emergency communications in the County, and everything in between. It’s a master class in wildfire preparedness, and there’s always something new on the agenda.

Upcoming Virtual Town Hall Meeting

The next virtual town hall meeting is scheduled for:

DATE: Thursday, JAN 25, 2024

TIME: 7PM Pacific Daylight Time

DURATION: 90 minutes

ZOOM LINK: TBD

AGENDA: Insurance and wildfire properties

For questions, please write to: enid.arana@mysaferiverside.org

Join the Wildfire Alliance

The first step is to sign up for our bi-monthly wildfire specific newsletter. We’ll provide useful and engaging information designed to help you and your neighbors to be better prepared against the threat of wildfire. Each edition will be a quick read – and we’ll include some spectacular photography as well. So sign up today!

Need to register? Start here!

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