Don’t Let Your Business Get Burned By Wildfire
Wildfires have been progressively getting more severe this year, affecting nearly all 50 states. In fact, there are currently 36 large uncontained fires, while more than 33,000 fires have burned 3.5 million acres throughout 49 states already this year.
Make Your Disaster Plan Now
Firefighters during a 2013 wildfire demonstration at the IBHS Research Center
Wildfires can occur suddenly, and cause significant damage and disruption to the communities they affect. IBHS encourages business owners to take the time to prepare themselves and their employees for the potential effects of a wildfire by creating a business continuity plan. IBHS’ new toolkit especially for small business owners, based on IBHS’ original Open for Business® program, called OFB-EZ (Open for Business-EZ), is a great place to start. This free toolkit is streamlined for businesses that may not have the time or resources to create an extensive disaster recovery plan.
The program – composed of eight modules – stresses business continuity preparedness practices, such as knowing your risks, how to contact your key suppliers and employees after a disaster, and planning for how to protect your data.
Learn more about OFB-EZ and download the free toolkit.
Protect Your Property
IBHS also encourages business owners to make their properties more wildfire resistant by taking some simple steps:
- Create defensible space up to 100 feet out from your structures that will serve as a layer of protection between your business and the wildfire. Pay particular attention to the area 0-30 feet away from your buildings by removing combustible landscaping, trimming back trees and moving other items such as propane tanks.
- Ensure debris and combustible materials are not accumulating on roofs, gutters and around the structure.
- Enclose the bottom of elevated decks, and do not store combustible materials below your deck.
- Cover your attic and crawl space vents with metal mesh screens to reduce entry points for wind-driven embers.
Visit our Wildfire webpage and download our Reducing Wildfire Risk brochures for more information.
© 2012 Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety