FireSmartFireSmart is a national program adopted in communities across Canada aimed at reducing the risk of wildfire to homes and neighbourhoods. The Region of St. Paul is implementing a number of FireSmart preventative measures on municipally owned lands to mitigate the risk of future wildfires. Everyone is aware of the recent fires in the Province in Ft. McMurray and Slave Lake, we know it can happen fast and devastate an entire community and tax the local resources.
Some ways to FireSmart our communities would include assessments of the communities where there is a Wildland/Urban Interface. This is conducted by qualified professionals with the support of the local communities. This includes fuel reduction projects such as the removal of dead standing trees and thinning/pruning the remaining trees. This is not a clear cutting operation. These measures are part of vegetation management.
Debris generated from the removal and thinning of trees and plants is being disposed of in a number of different ways including mulching and small, controlled burns supervised by qualified contractors.
Debris piles are being disposed of using supervised controlled burning that is only done in favourable, safe weather conditions and are closely monitored at all times, following strict guidelines.
SafetyThroughout the FireSmart fuel reduction projects, the safety and well-being of residents is the Region of St. Paul’s top priority. As we begin to progress and start this initiative, Residents are asked to stay away from active work zones and operating equipment, as well as obey all warning signs. Residents are asked to keep the safety of themselves and others in mind. Stay clear of the ongoing controlled burn sites and drive with caution when passing these sites on the road. Slowing or stopping your vehicle near the controlled burns increases the risk of traffic accidents.
What is Needed From You
What is needed is some of your time and energy to make this happen. The Region of St. Paul Emergency Management is looking for a member of the public for their sub-division, lake lot or Municipality to be designated as a FireSmart Champion. This person will work with the Director of Emergency Management to get the process in motion. It is not a time consuming task, although it does require being organized, being a leader in your area, able to provide direction to the public in the work group. If you feel you are up to the challenge and know that having a FireSmart Community will protect the homes and lives of those around you, then contact the Director of Emergency Management and let’s get started.
Being recognized by the Alberta Government and Alberta Sustainable Resource Development as being a FireSmart Community is a huge accomplishment.
Resources (click on the links below)
FireSmart Home Development Guide assists homeowners in choosing building materials that will reduce the risk of fire damage to their homes.
FireSmart Homeowner's Manual outlines steps homeowners can take to protect their home and yard from the risk of wildfire.
FireSmart Homeowner's Assessment assists homeowners in assessing wildfire hazards present in and around their home and yard.
FireSmart Canada Guide to Landscaping assists in planning landscaping, there are several things to keep in mind in addition to the FireSmart principles.
Regional Director of Emergency Management/OH&S
Local FireSmart Representative
5015 – 49 Ave
St. Paul, AB
780-645-3301 ext: 219 (office)
Twitter: Region of St Paul AB (@St_Paul_AB) | Twitter