The community of CastleRock Estates is located in a forested and wildland area, a highly desirable place to live. What makes the development so attractive also makes it hazardous. Wildfires will happen – exclusion is not a choice. Wildland / urban interface problems continue to grow for a number of reasons:
1. Residents may not be aware of, nor fully appreciate the interface fire danger and the possible consequences.
2. Residents may have a false sense of security about protection from interface fire or believe it is the responsibility of their local fire department or provincial agency.
3. Some residents may be concerned about interface fire but do not know how to reduce the risk without sacrificing the "natural" settings or visual attractiveness of the area. Specifically for CastleRock Estates, the Statutory Regulations i.e. Building Scheme, is perceived to pose additional challenges.
4. Within many interface areas, the net effect of many years of successful fire suppression has been to increase the amount and continuity of fuels available to future fires.
The FireSmart Canada Community Recognition Program is designed to encourage local, self-organized groups of neighbours to implement solutions for wildfire urban interface safety by engaging and supporting homeowners, community leaders, and others in shared efforts to protect people and property from wildfire. Citizen involvement is the cornerstone of the FireSmart Canada Community Recognition Program. As participants in the program, you and your neighbours will learn how to decrease the risk of losing your homes and how to best protect yourselves in the event of a wildfire.
Wildfires strike fast! When it spreads in urban areas (the wildland / urban interface), not every home can be attended or defended by firefighters. However, communities whose residents take steps to reduce their vulnerability have a greater chance of surviving a wildfire. FireSmart homes and neighbourhoods allow firefighters to concentrate on fighting the wildfire - which ultimately saves more homes and lives. Even a few preventive actions can prove critical, because when adequately prepared, homes have often survived a wildfire without the intervention of the fire department.
Below are links to learn more about FireSmart, and what CastleRock Estates is doing to mitigate our risks.
- The CRECA FireSmart Committee developed a FireSmart Community Plan specifically for CastleRock Estates. This plan was approved by the Board of Directors.
- In 2018, a Community Wildfire Protection Plan was created specifically for CastleRock Estates. In addition, two maps accompany the CWPP to indicate Wildfire Behaviour Threat Class and the Wildland Urban Interface Class. Unfortunately, our community rates Extreme and unacceptable wildfire threats in close proximity to our homes and property.
Current wildfires in BC remind us all to take simple steps to break the chain of fuel (vegetation) within 10 metres of your house:
- Remove deadfall, debris, leaves, twigs, and other surface fuels from under stairs, decks, gutters, and ditches.
- Clean the corners and crevices of your house and yard, where needles and debris build up.
- Remove firewood, lumber and other combustible debris stacked against the house.
- Screen your eave vents with 3-mm wire mesh to protect from embers and direct heat from entering the attic space.
- Properly dispose of your debris rather than dumping it behind your property where it can contribute to fuel loading.
Want to read more about our community and what you can do to protect it? The following links will help you become more FireSmart: