Many parts of the country are currently in the midst of wildfire season. The rising temperatures and seasonal conditions create fire risks now more than ever. However, as businesses prepare for wildfire season, you may be wondering, “Why now?” If you are curious about what makes late spring the most common season for wildfires, keep reading to learn more about this phenomenon.
When Is Peak Wildfire Season Across the Country?
The average peak fire season across the country ranges from early to late August. This varies in areas that experience more humid conditions and storms, such as monsoons. However, overall, the late spring and early summer seasons are particularly dangerous for spawning wildfires. Spring brings dangerous wildfire conditions for several reasons, including weather and more.
What Makes Spring Prone to Wildfire Breakouts?
There are several reasons why spring is the most dangerous season for wildfires across the country. The rising temperatures bring more people outdoors and lead to conditions that are prime for spreading flames. Here are some of the biggest factors that make spring a peak season for wildfires.
Dead vegetation can make effective kindling for wildfires, and the spring season is full of this fuel. After the ground thaws, snow melts, and temperatures start to rise, you can find dead vegetation everywhere across properties and fields. Debris like this makes it easy for wildfire to spread across large areas, especially fields and natural areas with lots of vegetation. This is why the period of dead vegetation before spring life blooms can be particularly conducive to wildfires.
As temperatures start to rise during the spring and early summer seasons, the increased heat can promote wildfire conditions. Warmer conditions promote quicker snow melts, which reveal dead foliage and debris left over from the fall. Furthermore, elevated temperatures cause moisture to evaporate from soil, vegetation, and debris. These dry materials will cause wildfires to spread more rapidly compared with green and healthy plants and earth. Combine dry conditions with dead debris and plants from winter, and you have particularly dangerous wildfire conditions on your property.
Increased Outdoor Activity
While lightning is one of the main causes of natural wildfires, the vast majority of wildfires stem from human activity. As the temperatures start to rise and outdoor conditions become more favorable, people start to spend more time outdoors in the spring and early summer. Many homeowners start manicuring their properties in the spring, which often involves DIY debris burning. Campfires also become more popular in the spring and summer months. However, bonfires and campfires are two of the biggest causes of wildfires in the country.
There are various other ways that humans can cause wildfires during this time of year, including smoking, equipment use, and more. Essentially, the more people there are outside, the more likely that human activity will light a flame that will become a wildfire.
Secondary Seasons To Watch for Wildfire Risks
Spring is one of the most dangerous seasons for wildfires, but there are also secondary risks to note during other seasons.
Summer Wildfire Risks
Certain summer months also fall within peak wildfire season for many parts of the country. Hot summer months can cause droughts that further sap moisture from vegetation and debris, which creates more natural kindling for wildfires.
Additionally, many parts of the country experience increased thunderstorms and lightning strikes, which are the most common natural causes of wildfires. Human-caused wildfires also contribute to summer totals, with the risk of summer campfires and bonfires spreading out of control.
Autumn Wildfire Risks
While temperatures start to drop again during the fall, this season is not free of wildfire risks. The fall period between October and November is another season of peak wildfire conditions for many parts of the country. During the fall season, plant life starts to die and decay, which creates fuel for wildfires once again. The air also becomes much drier during the fall and winter months, which further dries out vegetation and increases fire risks.
Winter Wildfire Risks
Winter proposes the fewest natural risks for wildfires due to the cold temperatures and snow. However, there are some human-caused fire risks to note. Using heating equipment carelessly and improperly could cause house fires that spread into wildfires under the right conditions.
How To Prepare for Seasonal Wildfires
While seasonal wildfire increases are natural and there is not much we can do to prevent them, we can practice strategies to minimize their damage. Whether you want to protect your home or business, use these safety tips to keep your building’s occupants safe and minimize the effects of wildfires.
Protect Your Building’s Exterior and Interior
Wildfires that affect your home or business start from the exterior of your building. While many buildings feature internal fire safety measures such as sprinklers and fire alarms, the exterior is often neglected.
This is why more builders are now using fire-retardant paint for exterior materials. Fire coatings like these can help slow and negate the spread of flames, giving time for emergency services to arrive and provide extinguishing aid.
No matter the time of year, you should always practice emergency fire evacuations at your home or business. Wildfire evacuations may utilize different routes based on where your emergency exits are and the path of the potential flames. Remember to route your emergency exits and keep them in good condition—clear their pathways, test alarms regularly, and eliminate outdoor foliage that could block your emergency exits.
Where To Find Fire Protection Materials
If you are looking for ways to protect your building from potential wildfires this season, consider investing in intumescent coatings. These fire-resistant paints can provide extra defense for your building’s interior or exterior, depending on the type of coating you choose. If you want to learn more about wildfire protection paints, browse our exterior paints here at Firefree Inc. We supply a wide variety of protective coatings for builders and businesses alike.
As we enter the peak season for wildfires in many parts of the country, remember these reasons why wildfires can be so devastating in the spring. You can use this knowledge to lessen the damage your building could face. For example, take this time to clear your property of any dead debris and consider watering your land regularly. And do not forget to rely on our selection of exterior coatings at Firefree Inc. that can offer additional protection if your property lies in a wildfire’s path.