FIRESafe MARIN News

Wildfire Safety Blog and News from FIRESafe MARIN.

Home Hardening Workshop for Building Professionals: November 19

2019-11-19Wildfire Home Hardening workshop for Contractors

Tuesday, November 19 FIRESafe MARIN will host two wildfire "home hardening" workshops at Embassy Suites in San Rafael.  

Register online TODAY!

1PM Workshop for Contractors, Architects, Designers, Handymen

  • 1PM-4PM Workshop and Seminar for Building Professionals
  • 4PM-5PM Manufacturer Showcase and Live Burn Demo

Recognizing that home-hardening through improved architectural design, ember and ignition resistant material selection, and retrofitting existing buildings are the most important factors in improving home survival during wildfires, FIRESafe MARIN has developed a seminar and training curriculum to introduce building professionals to these concepts.

Taught by experts in the field of building science, home hardening, and wildfire, this seminar is intended for building industry professionals to:

  • Train the contractor, handyman, architect, and owner/builder to recognize structural vulnerabilities to wildfires and embers;
  • Introduce ignition and ember resistant designs and materials;
  • Provide home-hardening and retrofitting resources;
  • Encourage building modifications to reduce the likelihood of structural ignitions during wildfires;
  • Develop a list of contractors to provide Marin homeowners with access to knowledgeable professionals;
  • Meet manufacturers and see ignition resistant and noncombustible building materials.

**Weather permitting, a live fire demonstration will be conducted at 5PM to demonstrate the differences between ordinary and fire-resistant construction. 

Homeowners are encouraged to attend the Live burn demonstration at 5PM, and stay for a 2 hour seminar focused on home hardening from the homeowner's perspective.

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Home Hardening Workshop for Homeowners

2019-11-19 Home Hardening Workshop for Homeowners

Attention Marin Homeowners! Join FIRESafe MARIN for a FREE 2-hour seminar on wildfire home-hardening.

Register online TODAY!

  • 5PM Live Burn Demo and Manufacturer Showcase
  • 6PM-8PM Seminar for Homeowners

Recognizing that home-hardening through improved architectural design, ember and ignition resistant material selection, and retrofitting existing buildings are the most important factors in improving home survival during wildfires, FIRESafe MARIN has developed a seminar and training curriculum to introduce homeowners to these concepts.

Taught by experts in the field of wildfire, home hardening, and building science, this seminar will help Marin homeowners to:

  • Identify their home’s vulnerabilities to wildfires and embers;
  • Introduce ignition and ember resistant design and materials;
  • Provide home-hardening and retrofitting resources;
  • Encourage building modifications to reduce the likelihood of structural ignitions during wildfires;
  • Manufacturer representatives will be on-site to display fire resistant building materials.

**Weather permitting, a live fire demonstration will be conducted at 5PM to demonstrate the differences between ordinary and fire-resistant construction. 

Are you a building industry professional? At 1PM November 19, FIRESafe MARIN will host an even more detailed and informative 4 hour seminar for architects, contractors, handmen, and DIYers. If you're interested in attending this seminar, click here...

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Upcoming Living With Fire" Seminars in Marin

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Register today for one of our acclaimed "Living With Fire" seminars.  Only four more seminars scheduled for 2019!

Learn about your community’s hazard and what you can do about it from the wildfire experts from FIRESafe MARIN and your local fire department.

  • Are you and your family prepared to safely evacuate when a wildfire strikes?
  • Is your home vulnerable to igniting from wildfire embers?
  • Does your home have adequate Defensible Space?
  • Are you interested in working with neighbors and land managers to reduce fire risk in your community? 
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Marin Wildfire Prevention Authority Initiative

MWPA Logo

Wildfires are bigger, burn longer, cause more damage, and kill more people than ever before. This new reality requires greatly expanding prevention, preparedness, and fuel-reduction efforts throughout Marin. The Marin Wildfire Prevention Authority (MWPA) is a coalition of local fire agencies, emergency service providers, and cities, towns, and county government being formed to support the development and implementation of a comprehensive wildfire prevention and emergency preparedness initiative.

MWPA Initiative

Key elements of this initiative include:
  • Improving emergency alert and warning systems to enhance early alert for organized evacuations
  • Expanding coordinated efforts to reduce combustible plants and vegetation
  • Improving evacuation routes and infrastructure to enhance traffic flow and promote safe evacuations
  • Expanding and enhancing defensible space and home evaluations and educating homeowners about how to reduce the vulnerability of their home and neighborhood to wildfire
  • Providing grants and support to seniors, persons with disabilities, and low-income homeowners who need assistance maintaining a defensible space, making homes fire resistant, reducing combustible vegetation, and preparing for emergencies
  • Creating and sustaining a coordinated local wildfire public safety and disaster preparedness program
  • Supporting residents to establish Firewise USA programs in neighborhoods through ongoing public education

Bringing a Local Wildfire Prevention Initiative to Reality

  • Marin’s fire agencies, cities, towns, and county government are currently working to form the MWPA and develop a coordinated program for wildfire prevention.
  • To be successful, a stable source of locally-controlled funding dedicated to wildfire prevention and public safety is required.
  • A countywide parcel tax measure is under consideration for the March 2020 election to provide dedicated funding for the MWPA program.

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96 Years Ago Today: Marin's Largest Wildfire

1923-09-17 Marin Wildfire Headline

Late in the day on September 17, 1923, a fast moving wildfire started near Novato, burning nearly 50,000 acres and dozens of homes before reaching the Bolinas ridge and the slopes of Mt Tamalpais. Remarkable for the destruction it caused, this remains Marin's largest historical wildfire and teaches important lessons for current Marin residents.

The wind whipped wildfire occurred during an offshore wind event, known as "Diablo Winds," (and which would trigger a "Red Flag Warning" today), similar to the Santa Ana winds common in southern California. 

Notably, several destructive wildfires burned that day in the Bay Area and northern California, including what would become known as "The Great Fire" in the city of Berkeley, and fires in Nuns Canyon and Calistoga in Napa county, eerily similar to the North Bay fires of 2017.  The late season fire weather and low fuel moistures, similar to what we frequently experience in September and October, contributed to a fire siege that gripped much of California, burning Berkeley, Marin, El Dorado, Sonoma, Petaluma, Ukiah, and Santa Barbara. In all, 18 counties saw major fires that day.

From the Sausalito News, Volume XXXVIII, Number 38, September 22, 1923

"Thousands of homes were endangered and many were destroyed, and large areas of timber and grazing land burned over by one of the largest fires that ever took place in this county [Marin], that started at Ignacio last Sunday and swept southerly and is now burning in the vicinity of Lagunitas; estimated damage was easily a quarter of a million dollars. At the same time fires were burning in eighteen counties throughout the state.

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Register today for a FREE "Living With Fire" Seminar

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Living With Fire is a wildfire preparedness education program developed by FIRESafe MARIN in conjunction with the Marin County Fire Chiefs Association, Marin County Fire Prevention Officers Asscoiation, and wildfire and home hardening experts.  Presented in a 90 minutes with 30 minutes for Q&A, this program will cover:

  1. Personal Preparedness, Safety, and Evacuations
  2. Home Hardening and Reducing Structural Ignitions
  3. Defensible Space and Firescaping
  4. Community and Neighborhoods Preparedness: Firewise USA

Upcoming Seminars (REGISTER ONLINE)

Septemebr 18, 2019 7:00 pm -9:00 pm at Subud Marin

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Marin Evacuation Guide Updated

Marin Wildfire Evacuation Guide

FIRESafe MARIN launched an all new version of our informative Wildfire Evacuation Guide.  Our new webpage includes lessons learned from California's recent wildfires, evacuation preparedness tips and best-practices, and links to additional detailed resources.

Learn about:

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"Living With Fire" Magazine Arriving in Mailboxes!

Living-With-Fire magazine cover, 2019

Residents of Marin's Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) areas began receiving FIRESafe MARIN's comprehensive "Living With Fire" magazine last week.  This 50 page booklet was produced and mailed to more than 50,000 Marin addresses with funding from a CAL FIRE fire prevention grant. 

Copies will continue to arrive by mail over the next 1-2 weeks - most, but not all, Marin WUI addresses will receive a copy.  Didn't receive a copy? Attend one of our upcoming "Living With Fire" seminars and we'll be happy to give you a free copy of the companion magazine!

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Marin Welcomes 5 New Firewise Communities!

Marin Firewise Communities

FIRESafe MARIN is honored to welcome the following new Firewise USA "sites" (since June) into Marin's growing list of nationally recognized neighborhoods!

  • Oak Springs Summit-Woodside (San Anselmo)
  • For(r)est Ave Area (Fairfax)
  • Kent/Palm Neighborhood (Mill Valley)
  • Meadow Oaks HOA (San Rafael)
  • Deer Park (Fairfax)

Marin County s the fastest growing county in the nation for participation in the Firewise USA recognition program!  These neighborhoods enjoy the benefits of living in a safer environment, with tangibles like insurance discounts and a greater sense of community.  Is your neighborhood interested in joining this valuable program?  Learn more at www.firesafemarin.org/firewise

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RED FLAG WARNING Issued for North Bay Mountains

Red Flag Warning for Marin, June 7-9, 2019

Marin County, CA.  June 7, 2019 -- The National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning for the North Bay Mountains and other parts of the Bay Area above 1000 feet, which is in effect from 9 PM this evening (Friday) to 5 PM Sunday. 

A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are expected during this time frame with a combination of strong off shore winds with gusts to 40-50 miles per hour and low relative humidity ranging from 12-22% percent.

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FIRESafe MARIN   |   P.O. Box 2831  |   San Anselmo, CA 94979   |   info@firesafemarin.org

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