Princess Anne Office

30386 Mt. Vernon Road

Princess Anne, MD 21853

Wildfire Disaster Preparedness

To Prepare for Wildfire


  • Prepare an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
  • Keep insurance policies, documents, and other valuables in a safe-deposit box. You may need quick, easy access to these documents. Keep them in a safe place less likely to be damaged if a hurricane causes flooding. Take pictures on a phone and keep copies of important documents and files on a flashdrive that you can carry with you on your house or car keys.
  • Make sure your home is sided and landscaped to resist fire. Clear items that will burn from around the house, including wood piles, lawn furniture, barbecue grills, tarp coverings, etc.
  • Clean roof and gutters of dry debris regularly.
  • Keep chimneys and stovepipes clean and in perfect working order. (Contact your local fire department for specifications.)
  • Screen exterior openings to floors, roof and attic.
  • Install a dual-sensor smoke alarm on each level of your home, especially near bedrooms; test monthly and change the batteries at least once each year.
  • Teach family members location and use of fire extinguishers.
  • Keep handy household items that can be used as fire tools: a rake, axe, handsaw or chain saw, bucket and shovel.
  • Keep a ladder that will reach the roof.
  • Consider installing protective shutters or heavy fire-resistant drapes.


Water Planning

  • Identify outside water sources: small pond, cistern, well, swimming pool, or hydrant.
  • Have a garden hose long enough to reach each area of the home and outbuildings on the property.
  • Install freeze-proof exterior outlets on at least two sides of the home and near other outbuildings and additional outlets at least 50 feet from the home.
  • Consider portable gasoline powered pump or generator in case electrical power is lost.

Inspecting Your Home After a Fire

  • If there is no power, check to make sure the main breaker is on. Fires may cause breakers to trip. If the breakers are on and power is still not present, contact the utility company.
  • Inspect the roof immediately and extinguish any sparks or embers. Wildfires may have left burning embers that could reignite.
  • For several hours afterward, recheck for smoke and sparks throughout the home, including the attic. The winds of wildfires can blow burning embers anywhere. Keep checking your home for embers that could cause fires.
  • Debris should be wetted down to minimize health impacts from breathing dust particles.
  • Use a two-strap dust particulate mask with nose clip and coveralls for the best minimal protection.
  • Wear leather gloves to protect hands from sharp objects while removing debris. .
  • Hazardous materials such as kitchen and bathroom cleaning products, paint, batteries, contaminated fuel, and damaged fuel containers need to be properly handled to avoid risk. Check with local authorities for hazardous disposal assistance.
  • If you have a propane tank system, contact a propane supplier. Turn off valves on the system, and leave valves closed until the supplier inspects your system.
  • If you have a heating oil tank system, contact a heating oil supplier for an inspection of your system before using.
  • Visually check the stability of the trees. Any tree that has been weakened by fire may be a hazard.
  • Look for burns on the tree trunk. If the bark on the trunk has been burned off or scorched by very high temperatures completely around the circumference, the tree will not survive and should be considered unstable.

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