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 Is Your Family FIREWISE?

No matter where you live in Florida, you are at risk of fires and should be aware of what steps you can take to be FIREWISE to protect your family and possessions.


  • Provide adequate turnarounds.
  • Fire-proof trees along the road by removing dead limbs and brush.
  • Unlock the gate around your property.
  • A locked gate could prevent a fire truck from reaching your home.
  • Create an area of reduced fuel and established your “defensible space” around your home.
  • Keep water stored in swimming pools and nearby ponds or storage tanks.
  • Plan adequate access for a fire truck to reach the water.
  • A small portable pump can make that water available to you for firefighting.
Power Lines
  • Inspect nearby overhead power lines periodically to make sure limbs are cleared back a safe distance.
  • If right-of-way maintenance is required, contact your power company or local fire department.
  • Encourage or require that power and telephone lines be buried.
Debris Burning
  • Follow all local burning regulations.
  • In rural areas, debris burning is part of your fuel reduction plan, avoid summer burning or burning when winds are gusty.  
Find a Fire? GET OUT!
  • Fire Safety in the home usually means get out of your house.
  • Don't fight the fire unless it is to save a life. 
  • Close the doors to other rooms on your way out.
  • Call 9-1-1 from a neighbor’s phone or your cell phone. 

 Is Your Home FIREWISE?


Debris Burning
Follow all local burning regulations.
In rural areas, debris burning is part of your fuel reduction plan. Avoid summer burning or burning when winds are gusty.


  • Plan landscaping with fire prevention in mind.
  • Provide open space, plant fire-resistant species and
  • keep plants away from the house. 
Fuel Breaks
  • Clear a primary fuel break
  • 30 feet around structures, remove dense fuels that burn rapidly.
  • Keep trees free of dead or dying wood that are near or overhanging any building.

Secondary Fuel Breaks

  • Grub out potentially flammable small trees and shrubs.
  • Keep grass mowed – especially when dry.
  • Maintain irrigated green belts around structures.
  • Select ground-hugging plants near structures.
Fireproof Your Building
  • Clean gutters and roof of needles and leaves at least twice a year.
  • Keep flammable materials away from the base of buildings.
  • Don't let newspapers, rags, debris, leaves or grass accumulate.
  • Keep flammable liquids in unbreakable containers stored in a safe location.
  • Keep trees and shrubs 15 feet away from the outlet of a stovepipe or chimney.
  • Screen unenclosed porches or overhanging decks or floor areas with one-half inch mesh screen.
  • Do the same for roof or attic openings.
  • Use protective shutters or heavy fire-resistant drapes over large picture window surfaces facing heat exposure hazards.

Sarasota County, Florida
TTY: 7-1-1
or 1-800-955-8771
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