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New Mexico Wildfires. [Name] [Position] Department … [contact info]. New Mexico Wildfires. Wildfire Background Disaster Readiness Survival and Recovery. Wildfire Background. A Fire Typology Crown Fire Top to top Surface Fire Brush Grass* Lower branches Ground Fire Forest litter,

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new mexico wildfires

New Mexico Wildfires

[Name]

[Position]

Department …

[contact info]

new mexico wildfires2
New Mexico Wildfires

Wildfire Background

Disaster Readiness

Survival and Recovery

wildfire background
Wildfire Background

A Fire Typology

  • Crown Fire
    • Top to top
  • Surface Fire
    • Brush
    • Grass*
    • Lower branches
  • Ground Fire
    • Forest litter,
    • Duff
    • Roots
  • Spot Fire
    • Firebrands
wildfire background4
Wildfire Background

Grass Fires* – Particularly Dangerous

Hot, Intense and Wind Sensitive

  • Variable wind direction
  • Variable wind speed
    • 4 mph wind increase
    • 3 foot flame jumps to 15 feet
wildfire background5
Wildfire Background

Three Ways Wildfire Spreads

  • Contact by Flames
  • Radiated Heat
  • Spotting Fire
wildfire background6
Wildfire Background
  • Fire Causes
    • Human
    • Lightning
  • 2006 Fires as of Mid-April
    • 537 Human caused - 242,460 acres burned
    • 9 Lighting strikes - 99 acres burned
wildfire background7
Wildfire Background

Two Fire Seasons

  • Spring - First and Worst
    • Normally May 1st to July 15th
    • No rain + dry winds + vegetation
  • Fall – after Monsoon
    • Reduced moisture
    • Plant die out/dry out
wildfire background8
Wildfire Background

Drought in New Mexico

  • Every 10 years on average
  • Length of drought varies
  • Effects on fire season
    • Starts earlier
    • Lasts longer
    • Increased number of fires
wildfire background9
Wildfire Background

Drought Threat Estimate

  • 20 homes destroyed
  • 2000 people evacuated
  • Evacuations more than 3 days
wildfire background10
Wildfire Background

At Risk

  • Then…
    • Forest
    • Grass
  • and now
    • Urban sprawl into Wildlands
    • Extends danger to more people and property
wildfire readiness
Wildfire Readiness

Are You Prepared?

wildfire readiness12
Wildfire Readiness

Survival Factor One - Roofing Material

  • Build/remodel with Class A or B fire resistant materials
  • Class A fire-rated materials (2 - 4 hrs before ignition)
    • Tile, clay tile, concrete and slate shingles
    • Metal (with gypsum underlay)
    • Asphalt (fiber-glass reinforced)
    • Fiber-cement shingles
wildfire readiness13
Wildfire Readiness

Survival Factor One - Roofing Material

  • Class B fire-rated materials (1 hr before ignition)
    • Pressure treated shingles
    • Pressure treated shakes
  • Class C isnot recommended (20 min before ignition)
    • Wood shakes and shingles
    • Plywood
    • Particleboard
    • Asphalt (mineral reinforced)
wildfire readiness14
Wildfire Readiness

Survival Factor Two – Defensible Space

  • Area where vegetation & fuels are
    • Cleared
    • Reduced
    • Treated
  • Purpose
    • Slows the spread of fire to the structure
    • Slows the spread of fire from the structure
    • Room for firefighters to work
wildfire readiness15
Wildfire Readiness
  • Three Defense Zones
  • Size Varies
      • Building size and shape
      • Construction
      • Slope of site
      • Surrounding topography
      • Vegetation size and type
wildfire readiness16
Wildfire Readiness

Zone 1

  • Area 15 feet from structure edges
  • Key Points
    • Plant nothing within 3 to 5 feet of structure
    • Do not store firewood/flammables
    • Enclose /screen decks
    • Remove trees or reduce to one
      • Prune to 15 ft crown
      • Remove fuel ladders: leaves brush, shrubs
wildfire readiness17
Wildfire Readiness
  • Area 75 to 125 feet from structure edges
    • Slope & Topography
    • Increase distance
    • Example
      • 90 ft Uphill
      • 104 ft downhill

Zone 2

wildfire readiness18
Wildfire Readiness

Zone 2

  • Key Points
    • Reduce fuels
      • Remove stressed, diseased, dead trees and shrubs
      • Thin and prune the rest to 10 feet between crowns
      • Thin along driveways to main access road
      • Mow grasses
    • Slopes
      • Allow more space between crowns
      • Move firewood/woodpiles at least 30 feet up slope
wildfire readiness19
Wildfire Readiness

Zone 2

  • Key Points
    • Locate propane tanks at least 30 feet from structure
        • Preferably on same elevation
        • Do not screen tanks with shrubs or vegetation
        • Clear all vegetation within 10 feet of tanks
    • Dispose of slash
wildfire readiness20
Wildfire Readiness

Zone 3

  • Undefined area beyond Zone 2
  • Key Points
    • Thinning based on land management objectives
    • Species based on area
    • Consult Forestry Division experts
    • Mowing is not necessary
    • Pruning is generally not necessary.
wildfire readiness21
Wildfire Readiness

Landscaping Defensible Space

  • Trees & Shrubs
    • Choose species that are fire resistant
    • Maintenance is still important
  • Native Grasses
    • Lower (shorter) growing
    • Less maintenance
    • Seed available & inexpensive
wildfire readiness22
Wildfire Readiness

Landscaping Defensible Space

  • “Fire Wise Plant Materials”
    • Lists trees and shrubs
    • Available on the Web at

http://aces.nmsu.edu/defensible_zone/protect/docs_pdf/fire_wise.pdf

  • “Grass Seed Mixes to Reduce Wildfire Hazard”
    • Native & non-native mixes
    • Listed by altitude range
    • Available on the Web at

http://aces.nmsu.edu/defensible_zone/protect/docs_pdf/grass_seed.pdf

wildfire readiness23
Wildfire Readiness

A defensible space

might look like the

one shown here.

wildfire readiness24
Wildfire Readiness

Before Wildfire Threatens

  • Use the Annual Checklist
    • Defensible space cleared of trash and debris
    • Keep roof, gutters and chimneys clean
    • Grass & weeds mowed
    • Test smoke/CO detectors
    • Check fire extinguishers
  • Update Your Disaster Supplies Kit
    • Food, water and supplies for three days + First Aid Kit
    • Key Financial and personal papers
    • Plan for pet survival/removal
wildfire readiness25
Wildfire Readiness

When Wildfire Threatens

  • Stay Informed & Prepare to Leave
    • Make vehicles ready for escape
    • Confine pets
    • Arrange for housing
    • Load Emergency Supplies Kit & Vital Documents Packet
  • Evacuate When Instructed
    • Wear protective clothing
    • Lock your home
    • Let someone know your plans
    • Drive away from fire
wildfire readiness26
Wildfire Readiness

When Wildfire Threatens

  • If you have time
    • Close windows, vents, doors.
    • Shut off gas
    • Open fireplace damper; close fireplace screen.
    • Remove flammable materials from windows and sliding glass doors.
    • Leave a light on in each room to make the house visible in heavy smoke
wildfire readiness27
Wildfire Readiness

When Wildfire Threatens

If you have time

  • Seal attic and ground vents
  • Turn off propane tanks
  • Connect garden hoses
  • Place lawn sprinklers on roof & wet it down
  • Place sprinkler near above ground fuel tanks
  • Wet or remove shrubs within 15 feet
wildfire readiness28
Wildfire Readiness

Full information is in

“Creating Wildfire Defensible Zones”

on the Web at

http://aces.nmsu.edu/defensible_zone/protect/docs_pdf/wildfire_defense.pdf

and

“Wildfire…Are You Prepared?”

on the Web at

http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/downloads/pdf/publications/fa-287-508.pdf

wildfire readiness29
Wildfire Readiness

Recommended Web Site

http://www.firewise.org

Firewise Communities Program

survival during a wildfire
Survival during a Wildfire

Vehicle

  • Roll up windows and close vents
  • Park away from trees and brush
  • Headlights on/ignition off
  • Get on the floor/coverup
  • Wait for fire to pass
  • Stay in the vehicle
survival during a wildfire31
Survival during a Wildfire
  • At Home
    • Go inside as fire approaches
    • Fire will pass before the house burns down
  • In the Open
    • Sparse fuel area
    • Ditch, road cut or depression
    • Cover yourself
wildfire recovery
Wildfire Recovery

After the Fire

  • First 24 Hours
    • Contact Assistance Agencies
    • Contact Insurance Company
  • Ongoing Actions
    • Valuing Property
    • Replacing Documents
    • Salvage and Restoration
wildfire recovery33
Wildfire Recovery

Web Site

http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/citizens/all_citizens/atf/

After the Fire – Return to Normal

wildfire readiness34
Wildfire Readiness

In Conclusion

  • The Wildfire Threat
  • Preparing for the Threat
  • Survival and Recovery
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