Wildfire mitigation defensible space is the area around a home or structure that has a reduce wildfire hazard footprint. It is divided into three distinct zones with activities specific to each zone intended to reduce fuels and the potential spread of wildfire in towards your home our out towards other homes. Homeowners that establish defensible space zones help reduce the likelihood of their home igniting during a wildfire. Defensible space is intended to safeguard each home as well as minimize the spread of wildfires to adjacent homes.
Zone 1 – Immediate
Zone 1 (0-5 feet from the home) is the area immediately adjacent to your home or other structures on your property such as barns and sheds. Your home’s immediate zone is the extremely important as it can help prevent embers from igniting and destroying your home during a wildfire. All fuels should be completely removed from this zone to establish a fire break, or an area devoid of combustible fuels.
Zone 2 – Intermediate
Zone 2 (5-30 feet from the home) is the second area projecting out from your home or other structures on your property such as barns and sheds. Your home’s intermediate zone is where to focus on reducing fuels such as vegetation, clumped trees and low-lying branches. This zone is a transition to your extended zone.
Zone 3 – Extended
Zone 3 (30-100 feet from the home) is the area farthest away from your home. This zone represents your home’s largest span of wildfire defense in the form of a shaded fuel break, which is an area of thinned and trimmed trees that help maintain green, less-combustible forest floor vegetation. Zone 3’s shaded fuel break is your first line of defense and potentially the hardest to maintain.
Roads and Driveways
Access to or from your home during a wildfire is extremely important. Friends, family and emergency personnel need to safely access your home for evacuation and other wildfire fighting activities. Your driveway and adjacent space are an additional opportunity to establish fire and shaded fuel break zone to protect your home and hinder the spread of wildfires. Overgrown and crowded trees, dense vegetation and other fuel on and around your driveway create dangerous fire spreading conditions and should be removed.
Kozar Tree Werks can partner with homeowners, HOAs and local community organizations to assess homes against wildfires in each of the three defensible space zones. Additionally, we know how to adjust defensible space standards to varying grades around your home so that actions taken are appropriate for your home and its surrounding topography. If you already have your home assessed and need help addressing specific activities such as removing, thinning or trimming trees, Kozar Tree Werks can help. Our trained and experience professions will take the time and care to walk your home assessment and create a plan.