Autumn yard work now can ensure fire safety year round

File photo by Barbara Chase

With cloudy skies, rain, and windy conditions, it is clear that autumn has finally arrived in the Pacific Northwest. The Washington State Fire Marshal’s Office advises residents that a little yardwork around your home now can improve your fire safety and help firefighters respond to emergencies.

· Clear leaves and other debris from your roof and gutters to reduce the risk of moisture damage now and fire spreading to your home in the spring. Pick a dry day to remove fallen debris and leaves from your roof top and gutters. Exercise proper ladder safety and assess your own abilities when considering climbing ladders or walking on your roof.
· Trim branches or shrubs away from your posted house numbers to make it easier for first responders to find your home in emergency situations.
· Keep a clearance of three feet around fire hydrants in your neighborhood. Overgrown vines, tree branches, or even snow, can slow firefighters down when responding to a fire.

Taking some time for yard maintenance now can mitigate damages and emergencies around your home and in your neighborhood for a long time. For more information on these recommendations, contact the State Fire Marshal’s Office at 360-596-3929.

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