Wildfire is always a concern with the extreme weather in Colorado, and it is a more potent threat during droughts or dry spells. The CCOB Office of Emergency Management collaborates with multiple agencies and the public to ensure the wildland fire management programs are fully integrated. They interact with partners and cooperators to include planning, preparedness, suppression, restoration, monitoring, research and education components of fire management.
Sign Up for Emergency Notifications
Subscribe to and provide your preferred information to LookoutAlert, the system through which our emergency notifications are sent out to warn Broomfield residents of potential hazards and threats.
Know about Current Fire Restrictions and Bans
The North Metro Fire Rescue District may enact fire restrictions and bans for portions of the City and County of Broomfield. Detailed information can be found on the Outdoor Burning and Fire Restrictions web page. Find information on that page to subscribe to receive fire restrictions and bans email or text alerts.
Be Aware of Red Flag Warnings
The National Weather Service issues red flag warnings when warm temperatures, very low humidities, and stronger winds combine to produce an increased risk of fire danger. These warnings can be found on the National Weather Service website and will be taken into account for enacting fire restrictions or bans in our area. You can also select to receive weather alerts, like red flag warnings, in the settings of LookoutAlert.
Plan and Prepare
The best way to protect your family and your property during an emergency is to prepare and plan ahead of time. Don't wait for disaster to hit your community. See some tips from North Metro Fire Rescue District on the Plan and Prepare web page.
Prepare Emergency Go-Bags
Put together a 72-hour emergency “go-bag” supply kit. Include water, food and protective clothing, including sturdy shoes, cotton or wool clothing, long pants, long-sleeved shirt, gloves, medications, phone charger and travel toiletries. Store in easy-to-carry packs. Have children help put together go-bags (these may include some toys or a stuffed animal).
If you have special physical or medical needs, be sure to have an extra supply of medication and supplies to take with you if you evacuate. People with heart and lung diseases must be especially careful around wood smoke.
Other suggestions on what to include in your kit can be found at www.ready.gov/kit. Be sure to include copies of personal documents and contact lists, necessary medications and extra cash. We know it can get expensive, so focus on the necessities first.
Make a Family Plan
Talk to all family members, including the little ones. You and your family might not be together during a disaster. Collect contact information of everyone in the family and make sure everyone knows where and how to reconnect after wildfire evacuation. You can create a family communications plan by using the templates and information found on the Ready.gov Make a Plan pages.
Develop an Evacuation Plan
Know about the different levels of evacuation and how to respond. If you need to evacuate your house, determine a process for evacuating quickly. Practice the plan at least two times each year. Things to consider when developing your evacuation plan:
- What are the items from your house you would need to collect during a wildfire pre-evacuation or evacuation?
- Store copies of your vital records and lists, photos or videos of valuable items in a fire proof envelope or box. Include updated insurance policies.
- What is your emergency plan for your pets and livestock? Be sure to be aware of the usual dedicated locations in your area for animal evacuations.
- Designate a “safety zone.” What are the different routes out of the neighborhood to get to the “safety zone?” What if the planned evacuation routes are blocked by fire? What is the secondary route for getting to the “safety zone?”
- Practice using these different, emergency routes routinely.
- Discuss who would be responsible for getting what and that they know everything is located. Then — practice!
Evaluate your House
Begin your evaluation at your driveway and clearly mark all driveways with names/addresses. Find out if your roof is hail and high-wind resistant. Are windows and doors built to withstand the weather and debris? North Metro Fire Rescue District has a Protecting Your Home from Wildfire page, with information such as:
- Remove leaves, pine needles, dead vegetation and other flammable materials from roof, gutters, window wells and under decks.
- Keep your lawn hydrated. If brown, cut it short.
- Prune low-hanging tree limbs and limbs that are close to or overhang your home.
- Screen areas below your deck and cover exterior vents with 1/8" wire mesh to help prevent embers from igniting under the deck or getting inside the attic and home.
- Use hardscape material like gravel, pavers, etc. instead of combustible material such as bark or mulch.
- Store firewood at least 5-10 feet away from the house.
- Limit combustible items (outdoor furniture, planters, etc.) on top of decks. If this isn't feasible year-round, consider moving combustible items away from the home on Red Flag Warning and high fire risk days.
Call your local fire, forestry, or natural resources office, or go to www.firewise.org for more ideas on home design and landscaping. Know how to shut off utilities, including water and electrical.
Help Reduce Your Risks During Wildfire
We recommend residents take steps to make their home less susceptible to fire. Ways to do that:
- Understand North Metro Fire Rescue District’s Community Action Plan to know how you can help reduce the risk of wildfire in our community.
- Look over the Hazard Mitigation Plan to understand the hazards and risks that can affect our entire Broomfield county.
- Debris from vegetation (slash) found around your home should be removed. The tree branch recycling program, facilitated by Public Works, provides a place for you to drop off this debris.
- Visit the National Fire Protection Association website, Preparing homes for wildfire page, to see risk reduction steps that can make your home safer during wildfires.
Know your Neighbors
Your neighbors can be your best support system. Talk to your neighbors about wildfire mitigation and how you can help neighbors who may need assistance, such as the elderly, people with infants or those with special health care needs.
Talk with them about how you can work together — who might need help evacuating? Does anyone have health issues to consider?