"You need to think about how to stay safe in the event of a wildfire."
After wildfires tore through B.C. last year, they are likely to be at the forefront of many people's minds going into the summer and experts at UBC are calling for people to have a more proactive approach and "prepare for more extreme wildfires."
As the wildfire season approaches, there are some ways that people can prepare for the events.
In a news release from UBC, wildfire experts Dr. Lori Daniels, Dr. Kelsey Copes-Gerbitz, and Dr. Kira Hoffman answered questions about what people can do.
"Everyone needs to do their part within their communities to be fire smart. Whether you are living on the West Coast or in some of B.C.’s hottest and driest regions, you need to think about how to stay safe in the event of a wildfire," Dr. Hoffman said.
Check your roof
Dr. Hoffman said there are many areas in B.C. that are prone to wildfires, so people should check to see if their roofing is fire-resistant. According to the B.C. government's FireSmart manual, options for fire-resistant roofing include "metal, asphalt, clay and composite rubber tiles."
Clean you gutters
Dr. Hoffman recommended people check to see if the gutters of their homes are free of debris. The manual said "sparks and embers can easily ignite" in the debris, and to "consider screening your gutters with metal mesh to reduce the amount of debris that can accumulate."
Pack a go-bag
"Preparing a go-bag with essential emergency equipment, food, water and blankets is helpful for evacuating on short notice," Dr. Hoffman added.
Knowledge is power, and there are a lot of resources out there to prepare you for wildfires. Dr. Copes-Gerbitz suggested reading them so you can keep safe.
There are some pretty useful guides on how to deal with wildfire smoke, and how to reduce the impact of wildfires on your home.
Know the evacuation routes
Dr. Hoffman suggested knowing the evacuation routes in your area, and to talk to your friends and family members about a plan if you do have to evacuate.
This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.
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