POWELL RIVER, B.C. – With the summer season fast approaching, the Powell River Regional District wants residents to be prepared for fire.

“The message is two-fold, one is, as summer is arriving early it’s time to start paying attention with anything we’re doing regarding fire use or that could cause a fire, and to pay attention to local fire bans” said Regional Emergency Program Coordinator, Ryan Thoms.

“The second message we are looking to promote is that 2018 is the second year of the regional FireSmart program.”

The FireSmart program is an educational campaign that brings practical information to residents on how to protect their homes and properties from a wildfire.

“It is part of the Regional District’s emergency planning service,” Thoms said.

“People can access it by calling the RD office or accessing our website, and we (the RD) can put you in touch with our FireSmart coordinator who would love to come out to your home or neighborhood and help you make some good decisions.”

The FireSmart coordinator is Marc Albert.

Thoms said Albert is going to be covering the region working with neighborhood groups and individuals to increase awareness about fire safety.

“We don’t need to be afraid of fire,” said Thoms.

“There are very simple things we can do around our homes, and our landscapes, to help maintain our properties and drastically reduce the risk of a wildfire damaging our properties.”

Examples of wildfire prevention methods residents can take is ensuring their grass is always cut properly, cleaning gutters and installing fire-resistant roofing material.

Further details about the FireSmart program are available through coordinator Marc Albert at firesmartpr@gmail.com.

More information on emergency preparedness in Powell River can be found via this link.