Fire Prevention In & Around the Home | the brief 2023-05-03

Someone called them Fendler’s Bladderpod in a recent Nextdoor post, and wow are they breathtaking this year. If you have not hiked or walked past a field of these amazing patches of yellow flowers presently covering our hillsides, you really should stop soon and smell the amazing fragrance they are producing.

Last month, the brief kicked off a Spring fire prevention theme by exploring the concept of defensible space around your home, and this month the topic is fire prevention in the built environment of your property.

Once again drawing on the information provided in Living With Fire: a Guide for the Homeowner below are some highlights of items mentioned in the booklet that seem especially pertinent to those of us living in Ranchos de Placitas.

Living With Fire suggests that firewood stacks should be located at least 30 feet from the home. If the stacks are stored uphill from the house, make sure that burning firewood cannot roll downhill and ignite the home. They suggest using an ember-resistant firewood cover.

Decks using wood and wood-plastic materials are often combustible. Keep all deck materials in good condition. As an option, consider using fire-resistant rated materials. Routinely remove combustible debris (pine needles, leaves, twigs and weeds) from the gaps between deck boards and under the deck. Do not store combustible materials under the deck.

Flammable Items
Keep your porches, decks, and other areas of the home free of easily combustible materials (baskets, dried flower arrangements, flammable decoration, and debris). Be smart with placement of barbecue grills and smokers with propane tanks or other combustible fuel. Have a plan for ensuring they are moved from increasing the danger to the structure in the event of an oncoming fire.

Generally, having an evacuation plan for your home is a good idea. Look through the evacuation section (pg. 15) of the Living With Fire booklet and talk with your household members about safely evacuating your home if the need ever arises and review the brief from March about our area Breakaway Gates.

Sandoval County Fire Department Fire Chief Eric Masterson emphasized at the 2022 RdPPOA Annual Meeting last December that residents can contact them to schedule a walkthrough at your home. During the walkthrough they will evaluate potential fire issues and recommend fire safety precautions that can be taken inside your home. To take advantage of this service request a walkthrough by emailing

Fire Safety and Emergency Contact Numbers
• In an emergency, call 911 on any phone
• For non-emergency situations, contact the Sandoval County Fire and Rescue Administration at 505-867-0245
Sign up for the CodeRED emergency alert system

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