Learn and teach safe fire practices.
- Build fires away from nearby trees or bushes.
- Always have a way to extinguish the fire quickly and completely.
- Never leave a fire--even a cigarette--burning unattended.
Contact the West Milford Building Department at 973-728-2780 to obtain local building codes and weed abatement ordinances for structures built near wooded areas.
Use fire-resistant materials when building, renovating, or retrofitting structures.
Create a safety zone to separate the home from combustible plants and vegetation.
- Stone walls can act as heat shields and deflect flames.
- Swimming pools and patios can be a safety zone.
Check for fire hazards around home.
- Install electrical lines underground, if possible. Keep all tree and shrub limbs trimmed so they don't come in contact with the wires.
- Prune all branches around the residence to a height of 8 to 10 feet. Keep trees adjacent to buildings free of dead or dying wood and moss.
- Remove all dead limbs, needles, and debris from rain gutters.
- Store combustible or flammable materials in approved safety containers and keep them away from the house.
- Keep chimney clean.
- Avoid open burning completely, and especially during dry season.
Install smoke detectors on every level of your home and near sleeping areas.
Make evacuation plans from home and from neighborhood.
Plan several routes in case the fire blocks escape route.
Have disaster supplies on hand
- Flashlight with extra batteries
- Portable, battery-operated radio and extra batteries
- First aid kit and manual
- Emergency food and water
- Nonelectric can opener
- Essential medicines
- Cash and credit cards
- Sturdy shoes
Develop an emergency communication plan. In case family members are separated from one another during a wildland fire (a real possibility during the day when adults are at work and children are at school), have a plan for getting back together.
Ask an out-of-state relative or friend to serve as the "family contact." After a disaster, it's often easier to call long distance. Make sure everyone knows the name, address, and phone number of the contact person.
Fire-Resistant Building Materials
Avoid using wooden shakes and shingles for a roof. Use tile, stucco, metal siding, brick, concrete block, rock, or other fire-resistant materials. Use only thick, tempered safety glass in large windows and sliding glass doors.
Contact the Emergency Management Office at 973-728-2840 or American Red Cross chapter for more information on wildland fires.