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Defensible Zones May Not Prevent Wildfires; They Will Slow Them Down

"The wildfire that was on the east end it just missed our place. It just it went around it." -Rose Sharosch

California is already experiencing wild fire and many have been told to evacuate their homes. With hotter and drier weather ahead for Wyoming. There is always a chance for another wildfire in Casper and you can either try to prevent the fire or you can give it fewer ways to spread.
There have been two major wildfires on Casper Mountain since 2006... Rose Scharosch remembers one of them very well.
Rose Scharosch said, "The wildfire that was on the east end it just missed our place. It just it went around it."
The fire missed the Scharosch's home because Rose and her husband created a defensible zone around their house. Something a local fire prevention organization said is the norm.
Sam Weaver, a spokesman for Natrona County Firewise, "Many times we'll see that fire just burn around the edge of the structure and then go on."
Although Sharosch avoided losing her home to the last fire, she prepares for the next one with fear she might not get lucky twice.
Sharosch said, "There was one on the east end, there's been one on the west end, and now they say the next one will probably be up the center of the mountain. So yes, we are very concerned about wildfires."
Sharosch created her defensible zone years ago and the program to encourage people to do so started in 2000. So why isn't everyone doing it?
Weaver said, "We have people who are willing to do it, but we also quite honestly have a lot of apathy."
Weaver said even with the resistance almost 30 percent of structures on Casper Mountain made the zone, and for those who haven't there's a simple reason to get on it.
Weaver said, "We know that it works! We know that if you have a defensible space around your home or cabin, then it's probably going to save your home or cabin."
Weaver also said he doesn't expect a large-scale fire this summer, but with the season approaching, he points out no one can anticipate a wild fire with 100 percent accuracy.
For anyone considering a defensible zone around their home, grants are available to help with the cost for up to 50 percent of a $4200 project.


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