East Grand Fire board candidate Q&A: As wildfire danger grows due to climate change impacts, plus human intervention, how will East Grand Fire prepare for these issues?
For Sky-Hi News
In addressing future needs, I see our organization continuing to develop partnerships which allow us to create mitigation solutions to lessen the effects of wildfire spread into inhabited areas (urban interface). If you have open space adjacent to a community, I believe we should facilitate communications between the stakeholders to allow vegetation treatments (like mowing to create a buffer) which slow the rate of wildfire’s spread to residential properties. You can do all the recommended treatments to your property, but if you live next to an undeveloped lot with all its beetle-kill fuel load, what can you do? Then sometimes the culprit is a governmental entity. Boulder County, steward of the open space adjacent to the enclave community in Louisville, told homeowners to cease and desist mowing operations on open space that they had historically treated to maintain a buffer. As a result, the enclave became involved in a conflagration from the Marshall Fire and could not be contained. I close by asking for the favor of your vote, and would be humbled to serve as your representative on the East Grand Fire District Board of Directors for another term. — Stephen Loo
Colorado has experienced record breaking and devastating wildland fires. Our firefighters saw a career’s worth of fire in 24 hours during the East Troublesome Fire. We saw first-hand how important mitigation efforts are. We will continue to partner with agencies to provide home owners with advice, assistance with driveway labeling, and wildfire mitigation efforts. As East Grand Fire plans for our future, we become a seamless organization that most people never have to utilize, but is there for them on their worst day. — Garth Hein
To prepare for increased fire danger, we need to emphasize training with the firefighters as to how best to be able to help each other. Also, to help the community understand the impact our daily lives have on our local environment. — Rachel Hoyhtya
Editor’s Note: This is the fifth part of a six-part series about the East Grand Fire Protection District’s board election.
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