How to best prevent and prepare for California’s peak wildfire season

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By Yosi Yahoudai
Founder and Managing Partner

Southern Californians in fire-prone areas are being warned to prepare for peak wildfire season as temperatures grow warmer during the summer.

The Los Angeles Fire Department said rising temperatures pose an increased risk for wildfires, especially in drier areas that have a good amount of brush nearby.

What contributes to wildfires?

“This is what we call ‘light, flashy fuel,’” Erik Scott, Personal Information Officer for LAFD, said. “You can see it’s just very, very dry. Very brittle, very susceptible to a spark. It’s this type of stuff that worries us.”

What Scott is describing is dry brush commonly seen throughout the Southland. In some areas, particularly canyon communities, they are more prominent and fuller. With temperatures getting warmer, it creates even drier brush.

“You get an increased temperature, it’s going to reduce the moisture so you’re going to have a low, relative humidity and it dries everything out,” Scott said.

That, combined with gusty winds, creates a dangerous combination that contributes to wildfires.

“Then, you have flames that are moving like a freight train,” Scott said of when the two come together.

Photos: What to Keep in Your Disaster Emergency Kit How to prepare for peak wildfire season

According to Scott, the best thing residents can do to keep safe from fires is to control the brush in their area.

“You provide the defense, we’ll provide the offense,” he said. “If you do the defensible space … you see a clear, delineated line where there is not thick brush, that is going to really slow fire because fire is going to move uphill.”

It’s best to clear brush in your area before peak temperatures rise. LAFD also advises the public to avoid clearing brush when a red flag alert is in place.

In addition to maintaining your property to prevent fires, it’s essential to have an evacuation plan with more than one exit in case an emergency arises. Along with creating a plan, residents are advised to know ahead of time what to take with them in the event of an evacuation.

“For some people, it’s irreplaceable memorabilia, photos, prescriptions, your ID, money in a few forms, what do you need for your pets, important legal documents,” Scott said as he listed some examples.

For more fire safety tips from LAFD, click here.

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About the Author
Yosi Yahoudai is a founder and the managing partner of J&Y. His practice is comprised primarily of cases involving automobile and motorcycle accidents, but he also represents people in premises liability lawsuits, including suits alleging dangerous conditions of public property, third-party criminal conduct, and intentional torts. He also has expertise in cases involving product defects, dog bites, elder abuse, and sexual assault. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of California and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. If you have any questions about this article, you can contact Yosi by clicking here.