FIREWISE OHIO GRANTS AWARDED TO
TWO PIKE COUNTY VOLUNTEER FIRE DEPARTMENTS
COLUMBUS, OH – Jackson Township Volunteer Fire Department and Elm Grove Volunteer Fire Department in Pike County recently received Firewise Hazard Mitigation Grants through the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Forestry. Jackson Township VFD received a $5,190 grant and Elm Grove VFD received $3,100.
These Firewise Ohio funds help local fire departments minimize the risk of wildland fires to communities in southern and southeastern Ohio.
“As the number of woodland property owners and the number of wooded acres increase in the state, more and more homes are being built in forested areas where they are at higher risk from wildfires,” said David Lytle, chief of the division. “Firewise Ohio aims to increase public awareness of the risks inherent to living in a wildland urban interface area.”
Wildland urban interface areas are defined as places where homes are in close proximity to forests or other acreage that is subject to wildfires.
Wildfire safety projects already completed by both volunteer fire departments include public awareness campaigns, as well as home visits to areas within their individual jurisdictions that are determined to be of higher wildfire risk. Jackson Township VFD purchased equipment to improve wildfire education and outreach in the community; Elm Grove VFD purchased equipment to reduce brush and flammable materials from around homes in their protection areas.
“Community and local involvement is vital to preparing for potentially hazardous wildfire situations,” said Lytle. “Property owners and local fire departments can work together, using Firewise techniques to protect their homes and communities.”
More than 800 wildfires occur in Ohio each year, burning an average of 4,500 acres. Trash or debris fires that get out of hand are the primary sources of these blazes.
Local fire officials are encouraged to contact Firewise Ohio Coordinator Aaron Kloss at 614-265-6896 for information regarding Firewise Hazard Mitigation Grants.
For Further Information Contact:
Andy Ware, ODNR Division of Forestry