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All facility managers need to be aware of the prime conditions for wildfires. These include ongoing drought or dry periods, ongoing high temperatures, and windy conditions. These factors indicate that if there is an ignition that starts a fire — whether from sparking failed utility poles, embers from an unattended campfire, or even a gender reveal party gone awry — that fire is likely to spread and grow rapidly.
In the case of an approaching wildfire, activate an emergency operations plan. This plan should include doing the following:
Wildfires can strike at any time when the conditions are ripe, and falsely thinking the threat is contained to a season can leave facilities vulnerable to damage and destruction. It’s critical that managers are aware of prime wildfire conditions as well as best practice protection techniques.
Strong preparation and response start with buildings, but staying in touch with the fire service is also integral. For free resources from the National Fire Protection Association on how to best prepare for wildfires, visit nfpa.org/wildfire.
Michele Steinberg is the wildfire division director for the National Fire Protection Association.
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