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Wednesday, January 9, 2013

NFPA: Got Firewise? Join the Firewise Challenge and Get Recognized!


  It’s time to give wildfire disasters the one-two punch!
 You’ve heard us say this before:  Wildfires happen. It’s not a matter of if, but when. The National Fire Protection Association asks, are you prepared? Join us in our mission to create: 1,000 Safer Places: The Firewise Communities/USA® Recognition Program Challenge.
What’s the Challenge, you ask? NFPA is asking community residents across the U.S. to develop an action plan and participate in wildfire mitigation activities to help reduce their neighborhoods’ risk of a wildfire threat.
But what about those of us who are already engaged in wildfire mitigation safety or are an official Firewise site, you ask? We say, all the better! By continuing to follow the steps outlined by the Firewise Communities/USA Recognition Program and submitting a final application by the end of the year, your community will keep its official status as a Firewise Communities/USA site, and it will automatically be entered into the Challenge.
For new communities that are not a part of the recognition program or have not engaged in wildfire safety mitigation efforts before but want to be, we also encourage you to participate in the Challenge. Gather your neighbors together and follow the same steps outlined in the Programsubmit a final application by the end of the year, and your community will be on its way to receiving the national recognition it deserves! Like the communities who renew their recognition status, once you’ve submitted your application, your community will be automatically entered into the Challenge.
But wait, there’s more! Not only is the mitigation work you do important for keeping your home and community safer from wildfire, five communities will also receive the grand prize of $5,000 each to be used for contracting services or equipment rental to help you continue your mitigation activities throughout the year including chipping of brush, removal of vegetative material, noxious weed remediation and similar activities. Five additional communities will receive the “runner-up prize” of a wildfire mitigation package with loppers, gloves, safety glasses, and more that will help you work on reducing wildfire hazards in the community!
The Challenge runs from January 1 – December 31, 2013.
 Check out the Firewise website for more detailed information, rules and guidelinesand the resources you need to start participating in the Challenge today. 
Now’s the time to get recognized. What are you waiting for? 

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****REMINDER**** Every fire has the ability to be catastrophic. The wildland fire management environment has profoundly changed. Growing numbers of communities, across the nation, are experiencing longer fire seasons; more frequent, bigger, and more severe, fires are a real threat. Be careful with all campfires and equipment.
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