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Langhorne Road community celebrates 5th year as ‘Firewise’ community

Langhorne community signFrom Brad Wright

Virginia Department of Forestry

 

Pulaski’s Langhorne Road community is celebrating its fifth year of participation in the National Fire Protection Association’s Firewise Communities/USA program, a voluntary initiative to protect local residents, their property and natural resources from wildfires. Since Langhorne Road earned the distinction as an official Firewise community, local leaders, emergency responders and individual homeowners have come together to make significant advances in making the community safer from wildfire.

Langhorne Road became a Firewise community in 2009. Since then, the community created and executed a variety of activities to help create the best wildfire prevention plan for the community. Langhorne Road’s anniversary will be celebrated during Fire Prevention Week.

“Because wildfires are burning hotter and faster than ever before, it’s more important than ever to take safety steps now,” said Mike Castle, Community Firewise Chairman. “Wildfires will happen, and we want to be as ready as possible to prevent damage to our community’s buildings, resources and of course, our residents.”

Over the years the community has been in the Firewise program, they have developed a Community Wildfire Protection Plan and Evacuation Plan, and obtained grant funding from the Virginia Department of Forestry (VDOF) to assist the community in reducing the flammable fuels from around community homes and road sides.

“We are particularly proud when a community reaches an anniversary milestone like Langhorne Road,” said Michele Steinberg, manager of the NFPA Firewise Communities program. “Your dedicated fire and safety professionals and motivated residents have truly helped minimize wildfire risk factors, and their hard work surely has paid off. “

In order to become part of NFPA’s Firewise Program, the community engaged in the following activities :

  • Enlisted a wildland/urban interface specialist to complete a community assessment and create a plan that identifies agreed-upon achievable solutions to be implemented by the community.
  • Sponsored a local Firewise Committee which maintains the Firewise Communities/USA program and tracks its progress.
  • Observed a Firewise Communities/USA Day each year that is dedicated to a local Firewise project.
  • Invested a minimum of $2 per capita annually in local Firewise projects.
  • Submitted an annual report to Firewise Communitites/USA that documents continuing compliance with the program.

 

Visit the Firewise Communities/USA website, www.Firewise.org, to find out more about how your community can begin the assessment process.