Dear Editor:

Given the rapidly increasing number of wildfires in the southwest, there are enormous benefits to having a Community Wildfire Protection Plan for your subdivision.  Grants become more readily available to offset the cost of fire mitigation by 50 percent. You and your neighbors become aware of steps you can take to protect yourselves and your homes, of how to prepare for evacuation at short notice and where your escape routes are. The fire department becomes more familiar with what it would take to fight a wildfire in your subdivision. No guarantees, but, with a comprehensive five-year plan, you are definitely ahead of the game.

Having just completed a CWPP at Echo Canyon Ranch (see April 25 article by Melissa Stedman), we admit to finding it somewhat intimidating at first. However, there was so much help out there from our friends and partners at FireWise SW Colorado, CSFS, USFS, and the Pagosa Fire Protection District, that it became a much more manageable project. We are so appreciative of everything they did for us, and you will be, too.

Geraldine Macomber

This story was posted on May 9, 2013.