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Throughout the year NFPA emphasizes this simple fact:   wildfires can happen anywhere, at any time.
That point was made this morning in a state that most would
think unlikely… Massachusetts. As my colleagues and I ventured to work at NFPA
headquarters here in Quincy, Mass., just south of Boston, thick smoke blanketed
the area and the pungent smell of burning vegetation filled our noses. (A
recent report by the Natural Resources Defense Council states that two-thirds
of Americans, or nearly 212 million, lived in counties beset by wildfire smoke
two years ago.)  An email from our
building services department alerted us to an early morning brush fire burning
in the Blue Hills Reservation area, just down the road, which sent firefighters
to the scene, closed streets and put nearby residents on alert.
Due to its rugged terrain, dry soil conditions and
fire-prone vegetation, Blue Hills has continued to be plagued by a history of forest
fire activity. Even with our late October evening temperatures in the
30’s wildfires can still ignite as this one proved. While current news reports
mention there are no structures currently at risk, we do know that all it takes
is an ember or two to take flight and land near a home to create a very
Our recent Fire Adapted Communities (FAC) advertising
campaign speaks to this point and asks residents to consider that a single
ember from a wildfire can travel over a mile. And while we can’t control where
an ember lands, we can control what happens when it does.
Read the press release and watch the PSAs to learn more.
NFPA continues to urge all residents to consider wildfire mitigation
activities year round, no matter where you live. Even the small activities you do can make a
difference. With fall in full swing, we
have a number of great activities you can do around the house – I bet there are
many you are already doing!
Check out the recent Firewise “How To” newsletter for a
great list of wildfire mitigation action steps you can take this season.
Need more information to help you get started? Resources can
And, as we work on our own wildfire mitigation activies here at home, we'll keep an eye out on that brush fire situation in Blue Hills.