2018 was one of the most devastating years for many California homeowners due to the destructive wildfires. Thousands of people lost their homes and dozens of people lost their lives. After months of people trying to get something out of insurance companies and officials trying to find out who was responsible for a significant portion of the damage, many residents think they are almost done experiencing one of the worst disasters in recent history.
Unfortunately, the peak season for wildfire is just around the corner and the predictions are not looking good. Homeowners should be aware of what potential dangers they face in the upcoming months and how they can get ready for them.
A grim forecast
Earlier this month, the director of the Office of Wildland Fire for the Interior Department warned senators that 2019 will be a challenging year because “the wildfires that we’re now experiencing are consistently more destructive than they’ve ever been.” Several other government officials agreed with the assessment and stated that the wildfires are harder to control and are burning for longer periods of time. With the state’s current conditions, they are expecting the damages to match or potentially exceed 2018’s Camp Fire.
Despite the bad news, California is taking extra precautions to minimize potential damages. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection is thinking out the vegetation surrounding hundreds of vulnerable neighborhoods, and major utilities plan on shutting off power when the wildfire risk becomes too high.
Preparing for the worst
Whether or not 2019’s wildfires will be as bad as 2018’s, residents should have an emergency plan and supplies ready. They should consider looking into their local government website to download an app or sign up for an emergency alert system.
Last year, one major county declined to use an Amber Alert style warning, so not everyone was alerted in time. Even if the alerts you get aren’t evacuation orders, messages about nearby wildfire activity can give you and your family enough time to pack up your essential items and leave.
After safely evacuating the area, you should contact someone that can help you with your inevitable financial problems that can arise after a wildfire devastates your home and your neighborhood.