Forests and forms of vegetation can be posed with threats such as bushfire. The term bushfire is synonymous to brush fire, forest fire, wildfire, vegetation fire, and wild land fire. It is any situation of uncontrolled fire in combustible vegetation that occurs in the countryside or a wilderness area (cited in Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, 2008). Bush fires can spread quickly from its source and to change direction unexpectedly as well as has the ability to jump gaps such as road, rivers, and fire breaks (The Science of Wild land Fire, 2008). Bush fire potentially causes extensive damage to properties and human life.
Thus, the importance of bush fire prevention has been encouraged for further development of technology and research. Fire prevention is activities related to limiting bush fires. Three prevention methods of bush fire prevention namely land management, building management, and community education on bush fire are explained as follows. Some strategies for land management are lessening the presence of fuels in forests or grassland are, slowing down the spread of bush fires, and providing easier access to routes for firefighters to reach and extinguish fires. (Fire in the Australian Landscape, 1999).
Fuel reduction helps avoid starting of fires from ignited fuels as well as a retarded spread of fire in case of actual bush fires. The creation and strategic placement of fire lanes act as fire suppression barriers wherein these areas of land are cleared of vegetation. The most effective tool on saving buildings and homes from fire is by having proper home designs and development planning. The damages from bush fires is significantly reduced, if not totally eliminated, when building guidelines and standards are developed that aims at making buildings more fire-resistant.
An example is the roof as the most vulnerable part of the building during wild fires. The roofs should be fire-stopped with concrete and other fire-resistive material to prevent entry of flames. Buildings should refrain from using combustible wood shingles on roofs. Not only are they dangerous to the rest of the structure, they can also easily peel off when caught on fire. Substantial cost of damages and losses from bushfires can be prevented through community education.
Every fire protection organization is to render information to the community regarding methods of fire prevention. Fire is an existing threat and danger that can strike anytime and anywhere. Consequently, the activity of fire prevention includes the cooperation people in the community as a result of public awareness. Several ways can be executed to create public awareness. First, the practices of fire prevention can be given to the community through information dissemination through leaflets, posters, booklets, and similar items.
Second, the public can be informed in the instrument of an extensive and intensive media campaign (National Fire Protection Association, 1987). The national media campaign is considered to be an introduction to the public but regional tasks groups can give the real educational and motivational information. The task group decides the best communication channel suitable for their region which can be outdoor advertising, pamphlets, video tapes, workshops, among others. (p. 76).
The message to the public should be relatively simple translated into public service announcements. The venues for public announcements regarding fire prevention are radio, television, and newspapers. These messages can also be reinforced in school systems (p. 79). The methods of bush fire prevention namely land management, building management, and community education are designed to control the community’s use of fire so that to lessen the possibility for bush fire outbreaks. List of References Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, Third Edition (2008).
Cambridge University Press; 2008. ISBN 9780521858045. Department of Natural Resources and Environment & Country Fire Authority, (1999), Fire in the Australian Landscape, East Melbourne, Victoria. National Interagency Fire Center (2008). The Science of Wildland fire. National Fire Protection Association (1987). Wildfire strikes home: the report of the National Wildland/Urban Fire Protection Conference. USA: FEMA. Voice of America (VOA) News. International Experts Study Ways to Fight Wildfires; 2009-06-24 [cited 2009-07-09].
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