What Is A Fire Defensible Space Created Around A Home?
A defensible space is the area completely surrounding a home and extending 100 feet out from the home. That space is divided into two “zones”, Zone 1 encircles the entire area around any buildings, structures, decks, etc., for a distance of 30 feet, and Zone 2 encircles Zone 1, extending the remaining 100 feet distance away from the homes. There are specific requirements for what elements can be in Zone 1 and Zone 2, as well as what must be removed. This is the breakdown of what a good “defensible space” would be:
• Zone 1 extends 30 feet* out from buildings, structures, decks, etc.
• Trim trees regularly to keep branches a minimum of 10 feet from other trees.
• Remove branches that hang over your roof and keep dead branches 10 feet away from your chimney.
• Remove or prune flammable plants and shrubs near windows.
• Remove all dead plants, grass and weeds.
• Remove dead or dry leaves and pine needles from your yard, roof and rain gutters.
• Relocate wood piles into Zone 2.
• Remove vegetation and items that could catch fire from around and under decks.
• Create a separation between trees, shrubs and items that could catch fire, such as patio furniture, wood piles, swing sets, etc.
• Cut or mow annual grass down to a maximum height of 4 inches.
• Create horizontal spacing between shrubs and trees: make sure there is extra clearance between trees and bushes that are in close proximity to each other.
• Create vertical spacing between grass, shrubs and trees:
• remove all tree branches that are lower than 6 feet from the ground.; trim shrubs and trees so that there is extra clearance between the tops of shrubs and the bottom of the lowest tree branches
• Remove fallen leaves, needles, twigs, bark, cones, and small branches.
We can trim and clear your yard and surrounding property to meet Oregon’s fire safety regulations, or you can call your local fire department and they will give you the distances between your home and any trees, greenery, or shrubs that you should have.