This weekend marks one year since Virgina woodland homes in Catawba were tested during a 650-acre wildfire known as the Pickle Branch fire.
The winter 2011 issue of the Firewise How-To Newsletter covers the fire on pages 10 and 11 and tells the story of three homes that stood out as shining examples of using Firewise principles to prevent disaster.
A 2010 collaborative project among the New River- Highlands Resource Conservation & Development (RC&D) Council, the Virginia Department of Forestry (VA-DOF), a private contractor and local residents used US Forest Service funds to remove tons of down and dead trees and brush from around homes.
The results on February 19-20, 2011, could not have been better. As the fire threatened homes in Craig County, the three homes featured in our newsletter story were easily defended by firefighters due to the work that had been done the year before to reduce fuel loading near the structures.
Check the Winter How To for more information and even more examples of "Firewise saves" and home protection techniques and tips.
Photo after the fire at Ken Harrison's woodland home, courtesy Virginia Department of Forestry.