There has been an increase in the number of wildfires throughout BC over the past decade, however wildfires are an important and necessary event in most Canadian ecosystems. Wildland fires play a key role in the renewal of forests and grasslands, and they reduce fuel loads that feed wildfires.
Wildfires become a problem when the wildland area meets an urban area that is not fire-safe.
Is your home safe from wildland fires?
A large portion of Coquitlam is considered Wildland/Urban Interface land, meaning that the forest meets the community in some areas. As a result, it is important to establish and maintain fire-safe homes and practice fire-safe behaviors within our community.
Keep combustible materials at least 1.5m from your home, and piles of firewood at least 10m away.
Keep your roof & gutters free of leaves and pine needles, and prune all branches that hang over the roof
Choose fire-safe vegetation, and space it so that there is no continuous line of vegetation leading to your structure
Remove all dead/dry vegetation and trim tree limbs 2-3 meters from the ground
Choose non-combustible roofing, building and landscape materials
Know where the gas, electric & water shut-offs are in your home, and have a wildfire escape plan in place
Preparing your home ahead of time could be the difference between saving your home or losing it to a wildland fire. For more information on Wildland/Urban Interface fires, and how you can create a fire-safe home, visit firesmartbc.ca.
Building & Landscaping Recommendations for Wildland/Urban Interface Areas
There are decisions that can be made with your landscaping that can help prevent potential wildfire damage to your home. This document lists landscaping choices of plants that are recommended and those we don’t recommend for properties in a wildland/urban interface area.
Designing and maintaining a fire wise building or subdivision can mean the difference in a successful outcome when dealing with interface fires. The Wildland/Urban Interface Area - Builders, Developers & Professionals Guide has recommendations that are provided to assist in the choice of development design, choice of construction materials and landscaping in interface areas.