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Wildfire Preparedness and Prevention Services

Our state’s record fires underscore the fact that wildfires are an increasing threat across the region. Most of King County is at moderate risk, but with more people living in areas where forests and development come together (commonly referred to as the “wildland urban interface”) there’s increased risk to life and property from wildfires. Therefore, areas in the foothills and the west side of the Snoqualmie Valley are at high risk for wildfires.

Homeowners taking responsi­bility for wildfire safety actions to protect their property is what being “Firewise” is all about.

KCD Wildfire Services

KCD has expanded its rural forest health management services to provide a range of wildfire prevention services to help homeowners and communities prepare for wildfire. This work is being done with funding through the KCD Working Lands Initiative (WLI) and in partnership with the King County Forestry Program. The wildfire prevention services offered by KCD offers include the following:

Wildfire Risk Assessments and Planning

  • Site visits to conduct wildfire risk assessments of individual homes sites as well as communities.
  • Firewise Community Plans for residents interested in implementing forest fuels reduction projects.
  • Firewise planning and recommendations for forest landowners through the KCD Rural Forest Health Management Program.

Forest Fuels Reduction

Some of the basic Firewise principles are, to thin dense trees and minimize woody debris to create healthier, more fire-resistant landscapes. Here are some examples of projects we may be able to help with:

  • Hosting a ‘Chipper Day’ during which community residents collect excess brush from their properties and create stacks near the roadsides and driveways for subsequent chipping by a professional tree service crew.
  • Implementation of Firewise practices such as tree thinning, pruning, and removal of dead and down wood.

For information regarding KCD Wildfire Services, contact Jarret Griesemer at 425-282-1953 or jarret.griesemer@kingcd.org.

Firewise Project with Trilogy at Redmond Ridge Community

In mid-March, KCD’s Jarret Griesemer coordinated the installation of a wildfire risk reduction project with the Trilogy at Redmond Ridge community. Members of Trilogy’s Forest Stewardship Committee, alongside Olson Outdoor Improvements crew, helped remove dead brush from a stretch of forest close behind a row of homes along the edge of the community. This is the first of several projects planned with communities in King County that will lower the amount wildfire fuels within forests surrounding homes. These projects help to increase the likelihood that homes will survive a wildfire, should one occur.

Members of the Trilogy community not at all hesitant to help out!

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