Keep Backyard Fires Under Control | SERVPRO® of Hershey/Swatara
Relaxing by the campfire in your backyard is a great way to make memories with your family. S’mores, hotdogs and scary stories are just a few of the activities you can enjoy around the fire.
Backyard fires can be used for a variety of purposes, like enjoying a meal or removing old debris and providing pest control, but even the safest of fires comes with its own set of hazards. The National Park Service states that around humans are responsible for 85% of wildfires.
In 2021, Pennsylvania suffered from twice as many wildfires as had been normal for the 21st century. So, as wildfire danger increases in Pennsylvania, it’s essential to know how to protect your Lebanon home.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you can’t still burn your yard trimmings, like your tiki torches, toast your marshmallows and barbecue burgers if local laws allow it. Taking precautions every time you burn will allow you to safely enjoy your backyard fires and reduce hazards.
While open flames are hazardous, grills, fireworks and campfires are some of the most prevalent ways backyard fires get out of hand. Grills are responsible for approximately 8,800 home fires each year, typically they are started by user error. Always supervise your grill when cooking food and be sure to check the propane tanks and gas lines that allow it to function.
Choose a safe location away from any buildings or forestry and only use a lighter or a match when building your campfire. Once you’ve gotten your flame going, only use wood to keep the campfire alive, and always keep a close eye even after you’ve put the flames out.
Fire pits are a great way to recreate the experience of relaxing at a campsite, but this equipment should be used with the same precautions as a regular campfire. If you can move your fire pit around, keep it away from overhangs and never place it on a wood deck.
While burning is a simple way to get rid of construction or household trash, you should only use approved firewood.
If you’re going to light fireworks, make sure they’re lit in an open area with plenty of room to land away from buildings, trees and other debris. Fireworks are only allowed to be set off from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. year-round in Lebanon, with the exception of select holidays, when they are allowed to be set off until 1 a.m.
Even with the hazards they pose, fire and flammable materials can still be used in useful ways. If your yard collects a large number of leaves in the fall and you have no way to dispose of them, burning your yard debris might be the best way to keep your yard clean.
Before burning anything, though, ensure your local authorities allow you to burn debris in the first place. Be aware of any burn bans in place and apply for a permit if necessary. At the moment, in Lebanon, you can burn any yard trimmings, leaves or any other safe-to-burn debris as long as you check with local authorities to confirm that burning is allowed.
Clearing your yard of dead leaves and shrubs is a useful way to protect your home from wildfires, as well as strategic landscaping that slows the spread of flames from reaching your home. Knowing what is safe to burn and following general fire safety protocols can help you keep your fire under control.
We all most likely have gasoline in our sheds and garages to power our yard tools and vehicles, but irresponsible storage can have a disastrous impact. Be sure to only store gas in approved containers, and keep containers where your kids can’t reach them. Gas should only be used for what it was designed for so when you can’t get those flames started, don’t reach for that fuel can.
Before lighting a backyard campfire, check your local weather conditions. If conditions are windy or very dry, reschedule your campfire to another day and save the marshmallows for later.
And if a backyard fire gets out of hand and leads to substantial damage, contact our experts at SERVPRO. Our crew is trained to examine and repair any fire-related damage, and we can restore your home or business back to normal as soon as possible.
Burn safely outdoors. And save some chocolate for us! If you have experienced fire or smoke damage, contact us today to get restoration started faster.