Prepare for Wildfire – 5 Things Every Nevadan Can Do

This list was compiled with peer reviewed resources developed by the University of Nevada, Reno Extension’s Living With Fire Program in cooperation with Nevada Climate Initiative as a part of the Nevada Climate Series. Learn more from their resources below.

Every year wildfires threaten homes and communities. While we cannot prevent all wildfires from happening, we can reduce the threat of wildfire and prepare for it. Below are five ways you can prepare.

  1. Reference the Wildfire Evacuation Checklist and learn how to:
    1. Create a go-bag
    2. Prepare your family members
    3. Ready your vehicle
    4. Prepare inside and outside the home
    5. Prepare your pets, horses, and livestock
    6. Know what to wear
    7. Click here to review the full list from the University of Nevada, Reno Extension’s Living With Fire Program
  2. Register for emergency notifications in your county
    Register through your county’s local emergency notification system to receive calls, texts and/or emails about wildfires and other emergencies. Registering increases the likelihood that residents will receive these urgent notifications. Click here to find your counties emergency notification system.
  3. “Harden your home” from wildfire
    Make your home more ignition resistant by retrofitting existing components of your home to withstand wildfire. One tip is
    to cover your home’s attic and crawlspace vents with 1/8-inch noncombustible corrosion-resistant metal mesh screening to reduce the chance that embers will enter your home and ignite it from within.

    1. Learn more – Be Ember Aware! Will your home survive when the embers arrive?
    2. Learn more – Wildfire Home Retrofit Guide
  4. Prepare for wildfire smoke
    Fine particulate matter in smoke can irritate your eyes and lungs, cause bronchitis, worsen chronic lung or heart conditions and even suppress one’s immune response, making it harder to fight off viruses and bacteria. Protect yourself during smoke events by monitoring air quality, staying safe indoors and wearing a NIOSH N95 or P100 mask if you must be outside. If you have underlying medical conditions, consult your doctor and make a plan.

    1. Learn more – Living With Smoke: How to be prepared for smoke exposure
  5. Create defensible space
    Reduce the wildfire threat by creating defensible space and managing the vegetation in three key zones around your property.

    1. Keep the area 5 feet from your home free of combustible material and highly flammable vegetation.
    2. Keep vegetation 5-30 feet from the home, lean, clean and green.
    3. In the area 30-100+ feet from the home, reduce fire spread by separating plants and restrict fire movement into tree canopies by removing lower branches
      1. Learn more – Fire Adapted Communities: The Next Step in Wildfire Preparedness – Nevada
      2. Learn more – Choosing the Right Plants for Northern Nevada’s High Fire Hazard Areas

Learn more with the resources from University of Nevada, Reno Extension’s Living With Fire Program