There’s no doubt that living in or near the bush can be a wonderful and peaceful way of life, but as we have seen recently (and not just in Australia) bushfires are incredibly dangerous and formidable forces of nature. Obviously, not all bushfires can be stopped, but avoiding starting one would help. If there is a wildfire and you live in an area that has a lot of land and trees, here are some tips to best prepare and reduce the likelihood of that fire spreading into your property and causing severe damage.
According to official stats, 80% of Australian properties lost to bushfires were caused by burning embers entering through gaps and holes caused by missing or damaged roof tiles. Check to see if you have any entry points in your roof for embers.
Australian Standards has what’s called Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) fencing. Installing this, though costly, could prove the difference between losing your home or not.
Again, anything combustible on roofs is a risk, so make sure your gutters are free from dried tree debris, this includes the downpipes. You may have trees that are too close or are prone to seeding themselves or lose a lot of leaves so they may need pruning regularly or removing so contact your arborist.
Overgrown areas of your land with tall grass and overgrown dense shrubbery are rife for bushfires. Don’t let them get out of hand and keep them from bordering onto your home’s walls and other dangerous areas.
Don’t keep flammable liquids in your home. Store them in metal or fireproof containers safely in other areas like sheds etc.
Overgrown trees, especially ones reaching over walls can be a way for fire to spread onto your property. Pruning your trees at the right time of year can help reduce the risk of fire spreading from neighbouring land or properties.
Whilst a major bushfire will not likely be stopped by the above, smaller ones or the odds of causing starting one are drastically reduced by following the above tips and being careful and wary of the dangers. If you have a large area of land with many trees around your property you may want to consult an arborist to have some removed and get some advice on what to do regarding the rest. Whilst your trees are a beautiful part of nature, they can also be a real danger when nature gets out of control so the above advice could mean the difference to you and your property.