July 2016    
We hope you enjoy this month's issue of the Network Pulse! In this issue we review the results of Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month, address evacuation as the theme to this year's annual conference, learn about exhaust systems sparking fire and much more.
2016 Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month a Success

Congratulations to the 25 member interagency planning committee and the 148 partnering entities for carrying out another successful Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month (NWAM)! NWAM is celebrated during the month of May to promote awareness and encourage action regarding the growing wildfire threat to Nevada communities. All the projects and events conducted during the month are the result of a coordinated, collaborative statewide effort that promoted this year's theme "Create Unity, Fire-Adapt Your Community." A full report of this statewide effort will be posted soon to the Living With Fire Website. Some of this year's highlights include:
Wildfire Awareness Half Marathon and 5K Runs: Wildfire awareness trail runs were held at Mt. Charleston in Clark County and Rancho San Rafael Regional Park in Washoe County. More than 270 runners and walkers participated. Attendees got the chance to interact with the individuals and agencies that could potentially be defending their homes during a future wildfire. Approximately $10,000 of the proceeds from the runs were donated to the Wildland Firefighter Foundation, a nonprofit organization that provides assistance to fallen firefighters' families and firefighters injured in the line of duty. 
Participants starting the 5K Wildfire Awareness Run at Rancho San Rafael in Reno. Photograph courtesy of University of Nevada Cooperative Extension.

Elko Community Wildfire Preparedness Day: More than 500 community members attended Elko's interagency wildfire awareness event held once again at Home Depot. Attendees participated in the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension's Ember House Youth Activity, visited mock residential landscapes showing "good" and "bad" plant choices and had a chance to meet Smokey Bear.

Josh Carson, Fire Marshal with the City of Elko Fire Department promotes good landscape plant choices for homes located in high-fire hazard areas. Photograph courtesy of City of Elko Fire Department.

Junk the Junipers: Junk the Juniper events were held at Silver Lake (north of Reno) and Washoe Valley. This activity encouraged property owners to remove ornamental junipers and other flammable vegetation adjacent to their homes and provided free drop off locations for the unwanted plant material. At the Silver Lake location, an estimated 18 tons of juniper and sagebrush were collected from 37 households. In Washoe Valley, 72 households participated.
Now is the time to start planning for 2017 NWAM. Contact the Living With Fire team if you need help planning NWAM events for your community at 775-784-4848.

FACt: Car Exhaust Can Ignite Fire

A fire started by the exhaust system of this vehicle. Photograph courtesy of Jeremy Couso and Tracy Dawn, Susanville, CA.

A combination of hot summer temperatures, low humidity, and wind has dried out the abundance of grass and weeds produced by this past winter and spring precipitation. Our landscape is now covered by highly-flammable fuel creating a very high risk of ignition. Leaving a cleared, hard-surface roadway and driving into an area covered with dry grass and weeds can bring a vehicle's exhaust system into direct contact with this fine fuel and greatly increase the probability of a fire start. Exhaust systems on vehicles can reach a temperature of more than 1000 degrees and it only takes about 500 degrees to start a grass/brush fire in the summer. Paying attention to where you drive and park not only protects the landscape but avoids filing an insurance claim for a vehicle destroyed by fire.

Being Ember Aware
In July's blog, Jamie finds vulnerable areas at her home that can ignite by windblown embers produced by a wildfire. Follow her blog and participate in the discussion here!

Please Evacuate Now!

A family emergency plan is essential in the evacuation process. Photograph courtesy of Washoe County.

How would you react if you heard those words in the middle of the night, either from an emergency alert notification message on your phone or from a person knocking on your front door? What would you grab first? Is your to-go bag packed and ready? Where is your flashlight? What is the safest route out of your neighborhood? Where would you go? Who is your family contact person? If you can't answer all of these questions, you may not be able to evacuate as quickly as you need to. Waiting for a wildfire to occur before making a family emergency plan is really no plan at all!
In the confusion and uncertainty created by smoke, embers, loss of power, darkness, and the sight of flames, your personal safety and security is dependent on an emergency plan and the training, planning, and professionalism of emergency responders. An important element of a Fire Adapted Community is the pre-fire relationship between the residents and their fire services that result in the preparation necessary for a safe and effective evacuation when that time comes. We invite you to attend this year's Nevada Network of Fire Adapted Communities Annual Conference. This year, it's all about wildfire evacuation. You will hear real-life experiences from firefighters and residents who were involved with recent wildfires, learn how to properly evacuate yourself and your family, and how to plan and conduct an evacuation drill in your community. While such drills are useful to the residents of a community, they also allow the fire services to identify and address potential problems well in advance of a wildfire. You will also have an opportunity to visit with organizations providing emergency assistance who can provide useful tips and tools to help you.
The conference will be held on Monday, October 24th at the Atlantis Resort Spa Casino in Reno. Registration will open soon, so watch for the special announcement. The conference agenda and additional details will be added to The Network page of our website as they become finalized. Hope to see you there!
This newsletter is provided by University of Nevada Cooperative Extension, an EEO/AA institution, with funding from a State Fire Assistance grant from the Nevada Division of Forestry and USDA Forest Service. Additional support is provided by the Bureau of Land Management - Nevada State Office.
In This Issue
Living With Fire Program Recognized for Top Award at Conference
Ed Smith, Sonya Sistare and Dr. Elwood Miller accept the Great Basin Wildfire Prevention Award at the Great Basin Fire Prevention, Education & Mitigation Conference. Photograph courtesy of Vanessa Marquez, Nevada Bureau of Land Management.

Living With Fire Program Co-managers, Ed Smith and Sonya Sistare along with Nevada Network of Fire Adapted Communities Coordinator Dr. Elwood Miller received the "Great Basin Wildfire Prevention Award" during the Great Basin Fire Prevention, Education & Mitigation Conference held in April, 2016.
"Living with Fire has received other forms of recognition in the past, but this award is especially meaningful because it comes from our peers in wildfire mitigation education who understand the significance of the issue and the associated challenges," Smith said.
Conference attendees included representatives of federal and state agencies, local fire service, communities and other organizations who had an interest in wildfire threat reduction education programs.
Click here to view more details on the award: http://www.unr.edu/nevada-today/news/2016/living-with-fire-award 
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