Photographer Heather Tianen took these shots earlier this week, a good reminder for Clark County residents to be prepared for an emergency
Those are just a couple of tips for those who live in an area that is potentially in the way of a wildfire.
The Tunnel 5 Fire in Skamania County is one of the first major fires of the summer in Southwest Washington. Frequent Clark County Today contributor Heather Tianen toured the blaze from a distance and took some awe inspiring photos on Monday.
The photos show the power of a wildfire — powerful destruction.
A still photograph cannot show, however, just how fast a fire can spread.
That is why so many fire departments and other professional emergency response units insist on educating the public about the dangers of wildfire and how to prepare.
Clark-Cowlitz Fire Rescue posted on its social media a graphic from weather.com.
“Wildfire growth can be terrifyingly sudden and deadly. Prepare ahead of time so you’ll be ready.”
Clear brush away from your home to create defensible space.
Use fire-resistant landscaping.
Know your evacuation routes.
Have an emergency supply kit ready.
Clark County Fire District 3, which serves 45,000 people in east Vancouver as well as the city of Battle Ground, also has wildland preparedness tips.
Post your address on your driveway entrance and home.
Provide access to your home and/or shop for firefighting apparatus.
Maintain a 30-foot defensible space around your home by cutting long grass or overgrown brush.
Keep lawns well maintained.
Prune or remove trees and shrubs close to your home.
Clean gutter and roof of any debris.
Screen off crawl spaces, attics, and decks to keep them free of debris as well as flying embers.
Do not store combustibles, such as wood piles, near your home.
The Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency — CRESA — has tips on its website, as well. Including the definitions of the evacuation levels.
There are links at https://www.cresa911.org/ to sign up for local alerts, fire news, and how to stay connected to loved ones during a fire emergency.
Level 1 evacuation: Be ready because there is a danger in the area. Stay informed. Have your plan and go-to kit ready. Act early if you or loved ones cannot move quickly.
Level 2 evacuation: Be set to evacuate at a moment’s notice. Significant danger in the area. Check news and radio for updates. Conditions change rapidly. Leave if you feel unsafe.
Level 3 evacuation: Go now. Leave immediately. Extreme danger in the area. Do not delay. Do not gather belongings in your home. Do not return until authorities say it is safe.
Tunnel 5 Fire update: As of 10:15 a.m. Wednesday morning, the fire that originated 2.25 miles west of White Salmon has grown to 546 acres and is 5-percent contained. The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning for the fire and surrounding areas for hot, dry, unstable conditions favorable to rapid fire growth.
Fixed-wing air tankers and helicopters are in use. Boaters in the Columbia River should use caution and avoid areas where aircraft are dipping into the river. Washington State Route 14 remains closed between mile markers 56 through 65.
Level 1 Evacuation notices were removed Tuesday for Klickitat County.
Level 3 Evacuation remains in effect in Skamania County for a two-mile radius around the fire. There will be a virtual community meeting on the SW WA Fire Information Facebook page at 5 p.m. Wednesday. Go to: https://www.facebook.com/SWWaFireInfo
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