Big Bear Lake, CA, September 26, 2014 – We hear a lot about maintaining “defensible space” around our mountain homes for fire protection–and rightly so–but it’s only part of the picture. Besides the presence of burnable vegetation immediately adjacent to buildings, the ignitability of a home also depends on its roofing materials. In one study, the Stanford Research Institute found that 95 percent of homes with both nonflammable roofs and adequate vegetation clearance survived a wildfire.
In 2008, the City of Big Bear Lake declared that any structure with a wood shake or shingle roof would be considered a public nuisance. Replacing wooden roofs is expensive, but federal and state grants helped local property owners reduce the number of dangerous buildings from 525 to just 73 by last year.
Earlier this year, the California Office of Emergency Services notified City officials that an additional $150,000 would be available to help the remaining property owners take this important safety measure. On September 22, the Big Bear Lake City Council and the Fire Protection District worked out the details:
All eligible property owners will be contacted by phone then mailed a certified letter containing a new grant application that states the offer and limitations;
The homeowners will then have four weeks to apply for the grant funds; and
- The funds will be equally distributed to the eligible applicants who apply
Any questions can be directed to (909) 866-5832.