Staying Fire Safe in Your Backyard | SERVPRO® of Anniston, Gadsden and Marshall County
Picture it now: Your family is sitting around a crackling fire roasting hot dogs, making s’mores and sharing scary stories. What beautiful memories you are making!
Backyard fires serve a number of purposes for us, including pest control, cooking and debris cleanup, but even what seems like the safest of fires can quickly become dangerous.
Recent research conducted by the National Park Service found that almost 85% of wildfires are started by humans.
In Alabama, a permit is required for outdoor burning in woodland, grassland or new ground cover areas. Permits are free, but they will not be given out when the wind is too strong or there has been a dry spell. With our weather, that can make burning in the summertime tricky and you will need to plan before you start gathering up your leaves and limbs.
You can still safely grill dogs, light up your candles and toast your marshmallows. Take a few simple steps each time you handle any outdoor flames and enjoy your time in your backyard while you minimize the risk of things getting out of hand.
An open flame of any kind will always carry a risk, but grills, fire pits, fireworks and campfires are the most common ways that outdoor fires begin. Grills start an average of 8,800 home fires, typically due to improper use. Check gas lines or propane tanks before you start your grill and always keep your eyes on a hot grill during and after use.
When you build a campfire, look for a spot away from structures or vehicles, and only use a lighter or match to start the fire. And be sure to stick to wood only to continue the burning once the fire is going. Watch even the embers once the flames have died down and the chocolate is all gone.
Fire pits can seem like a great alternative to an actual campfire, but they still require a lot of caution when you use them. Following the same regulations as a campfire and never moving a portable fire pit under an overhang or onto a wooden deck will keep your flames where they should be.
Using your fire pit as a way to get rid of household waste or unused construction items may be tempting, but you should only burn approved firewood.
Fireworks are allowed within city limits, and even though the 4th of July has passed, closing out your night with a bang is always a lot of fun. Make sure your fireworks are ignited in an open space and have a clear spot to land. Fireworks are not permitted on public property, so take note of your land and ensure you have plenty of room.
There may be risks, but fires and burn materials still have a purpose in our lives. Every fall as our leaves pile up, burning may be one of your only options if street pickup does not reach your home.
Before you start your fire, ensure there are no fire warnings for that day. In the summer, a permit is required for land clearing burns, and non-agriculture burning is not allowed from May to October.
It is essential to keep your yard clear of debris as an extra layer of wildfire protection along with the intentional landscaping of your yard. Make sure you know what is safe to burn and what isn’t in order to keep things in control.
Other combustible materials such as gas probably live in your shed or garage with your yard tools, but they carry a high risk when they are stored improperly. Only use approved containers that are kept out of reach of any little ones.
Only use gas for its intended purpose—that means even if the campfire is low, don’t reach for the gas can.
Check the weather before any use of fire outdoors. If local regulations do not allow it or the wind is high, skip the fire and save your marshmallows for a better day.
If you do experience fire damage, call SERVPRO. We have the training and equipment to handle every part of fire damage. It is our desire to restore as much of your property as possible as fast as possible.
Burn safely outdoors. And save some chocolate for us! If you have experienced fire or smoke damage, contact us today to get restoration started faster.