Montecito Fire Department hardens more homes with fire-resistant materials ahead of fire season

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MONTECITO, Calif. — Ahead of peak fire season, the Montecito Fire Department is replacing vents in local homes with fire-resistant materials.

The 2022 vent retrofit program is an effort to go beyond defensible space.

The program strengthens houses in Montecito to make them more resistant to wildfires.

During a wildfire, embers can make their way through vents and other crevices.

These embers can ignite combustible materials inside the home and possibly seriously damage or destroy a home.

The Montecito Fire Department and partner agencies are ready to respond in the event of a fire.

Recent post-fire evaluations found that hardened structures were more than three times more likely to survive than unhardened structures.

Additionally, studies analyzing the impacts of the Camp and Woolsey fires in 2018 found that many structures were lost due to ember intrusion through the vents.

In order to reduce the impacts of future wildfires in our community, the Montecito Fire Department has allocated budget funds to initiate a Home Reinforcement Assistance Program.

The Fire Department encourages Montecito residents to take advantage of this free service.

Newly designed vents provide excellent ventilation while preventing flames and embers from entering the home.

These new ember resistant vents will keep embers out and reduce structural ignition during a wildfire.

Montecito Fire is one of the first fire departments in the West to provide free home reinforcement assistance to community members.

In 2021, the launch of the Vent Retrofit program has proven to be an extraordinary success in our community.

Interested homeowners can apply to participate in the 2022 Vent Retrofit Program at montecitofire.com.

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