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Aug-04-2006 14:00TweetFollow @OregonNews
Homes Spared at Black Crater Fire Boost Interface Protection EffortSalem-News.com
Fire officials say residents listened, and their creation of firebreaks saved every threatened home, while promoting the entire fire prevention effort. Good work Sisters!
(SISTERS) - As the Department of Forestry implements the Oregon Forestland-Urban Interface Fire Protection Act in high fire risk areas of the state, accounts of residents who helped save their homes from the Black Crater Fire by creating fuel breaks are helping promote the prevention effort.
The 9,200-acre fire threatened hundreds of homes near Sisters and prompted the evacuation of several small communities. That no homes burned can be credited in great part to residents' foresight in cleaning up their landscaping, making structural modifications, and completing the self-certification process required under the Act.
Passed by the Oregon Legislature in 1997, Senate Bill 360, as the Act is commonly known, addresses the growing problem of wildland fires burning homes.
Today, the state's population continues to expand rapidly, with many Oregonians moving into forested areas where the risk from fire is acute.
Recognizing that landowners have a responsibility to help protect their homes from fire, the Act set standards they are to apply that lower their vulnerability to fire by reducing fuel loads on their property.
Working in cooperation with county governments and the Oregon State Fire Marshal, the Department of Forestry has completed implementation of the Act in Jackson and Deschutes counties. The process is underway in Crook, Douglas, Josephine and Umatilla counties.
Local committees identify properties within a county that fall into the forestland-urban interface classification. Following public meetings and formal hearings, information packets on how to self-certify one's property are sent to affected landowners.
More information on the Oregon Forestland-Urban Interface Fire Protection Act can be found at www.oregon.gov/ODF/FIRE/fire.shtml or by contacting the nearest Oregon Department of Forestry office.
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