SC Forestry says more communities becoming 'firewise'

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) The South Carolina Forestry Commission is working with communities in the Grand Strand and Pee Dee to become 'firewise.'

Crews with the SCFC had been dispatched to a wildfire in the Forestbrook area Saturday afternoon and are now clear of the scene.

The Forestry Commission's dispatch website says crews were dispatched to a wildfire just off of Forestbrook Road, in the area of Forestbrook Drive just before 2 p.m. As of 6 p.m., all crews were clear of the scene.

Though this fire did not cause any damage, or risk of life, the SC Forestry Commission is still working with communities in South Carolina to protect themselves from that devastating loss.

SC Forestry Commission officials said more communities in Horry County are becoming firewise in an effort to prevent a fire from destroying their home. Some homeowners are replacing the pine straw with mulch or stones in their landscaping.

Those whose homes have been destroyed by fire in the past rebuilt using brick or stone instead of vinyl siding. Mike Bozzo with the SC Forestry Commission said those are simple steps, but they can help protect a home.

Bozzo said "Communities are changing their covenants and the way they do business. We're working with several other communities within the Carolina Forest as well as all along the coast."

Bozzo said putting out the effort to become firewise benefits everyone in the end. Bozzo added, "Of course the community becomes safer but the other thing...it opens up avenue for grant funds. Those grant funds can help with implementing the various projects that will make the community firewise."

Bozzo said the Forestry Commission is working closely with local fire departments to make sure there is a plan in place so they can protect people's home in an emergency.

There are currently 14 communities in South Carolina that are qualified as firewise.

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