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Fires (And Prevention)

Fire prevention is up to every one of us i.e. keep your gardens tidy, clear nearby barrancos if possible, report any fields with potential fire risks i.e. piles of dead branches etc.

Especially when it’s hot or dry, please everyone be extra vigilant to fires, ensure all BBQs are extinguished, although not always allowed and gas better.

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General fire safety precautions and advice to be taken to prevent or actions to be taken if you discover a fire

In case of fire:

Call 112 and follow any advice given.

Fire Approaching Your House

If you find yourself at home and fire approaches, preventing you from leaving, do the following:

  • Stay in the house, it is the safest place.
  • If you have hoses, leave them open and directed towards the roof.
  • Close the doors, windows and shutters. Remove the curtains if possible.
  • Fill a bath or sinks with water in case the water supply fails.
  • Disconnect any fuel supply (gas, gas-oil, etc.) or isolate (turn off the supply)
  • Listen to the recommendations of the authorities via local radio stations or chat groups (such as Montgo Social WhatsApp, APMJ Facebook page, etc.,)
  • Remember that the power may go out so have some means to keep connected and receive information (radio, mobile phone).
  • Know where your main electricity, water and gas services are so that you can direct the firefighters to these if requested.
  • Make sure everyone in the house is aware of where the keys are to the main door and consider talking about an evacuation plan in advance so that everyone knows what to do if a fire occurs in your home. For example, how to get out and where a safe place to meet should be to ensure all family members have left the property.

If you are directed to leave your house by the authorities, take only essential items with you but include any medication and important documentation such as passports, etc. Try to prepare a bag in advance of being required to evacuate.

  • If you are forced to go out, cover most of your skin to protect yourself from radiant heat. Put on cotton clothes and cover the entire surface of your body. Wet your clothes with water.
  • Leave any gate to your property open or on manual to allow access for firefighters to carry out any firefighting activities, including using water from your pool.
  • If possible, consider putting any small gas bottles, flammable outdoor cushions, furniture, etc. in your pool so as not to add to the fire risk.

If you find yourself in a car and are surrounded by fire:

  • Don’t drive blindly through the dense smoke, turn on the headlights and turn signals.
  • If you are forced to stop, look for a place to stop where the soil is clean of vegetation and stop the engine.
  • Close the windows and ventilation points.
  • If you have to leave the car, make sure that most of your skin is covered.
General Fire Safety Precautions (Preventing a Fire)
  • Do not throw away matches or cigarette butts, nor light fires for cooking except in designated picnic spots.
  • On pre-emergency days of level 3, it is forbidden to start any kind of fire or use fireworks of any kind.
  • Only deposit garbage or any other type of waste in the authorised refuse containers.
  • In general, the burning of agricultural or forestry material is prohibited from July 1 to September 30, although depending on the risk of each year this period can be extended.
  • When the pre-emergency level for forest fires is declared at level 3, all burning of agricultural and forest remains are prohibited, even if you have authorisation to burn.
  • If you have already started burning and there is a change the wind conditions, it is mandatory to extinguish the fire as soon as possible.
  • Keep in mind that any activity that requires the use of fire involves a risk and is likely to cause a forest fire. If you take the appropriate preventive measures, the risk is considerably reduced.
  • It is recommended to get smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors fitted to your home as an early warning system.
  • Unplug any electrical items when not in use, especially if you are going away for a period of time.
  • Never leave any cooking unattended.
  • Never leave a cigarette, cigar or pipe unattended. Always make sure that they are fully extinguished in a proper ashtray before going to bed.
  • If you have an open fireplace in your home, when you clean the fire, place the ashes into a metal bucket and put outside away from anything flammable overnight until cool or fill the bucket with water.
In our neighbourhood:
  • Driveways, access areas and ditches on your property should be kept clean of dry vegetation.
    If you have electrical panels, gas tanks or any other flammable material outside the house, make sure that the floor is concrete or free of vegetation.
  • Trim trees and bushes that overhang or touch your house or neighbouring houses to minimise fire spread.
  • Local rules state that anyone living within 500 metres of a national park (i.e., Montgo) are not allowed to use wood or coal BBQs or fires. When using any type of gas BBQ should have a hosepipe turned on close by or, at the very minimum, a large bucket of water nearby.
  • Install metal mesh of non-flammable material of a maximum of 1 centimetre opening, in chimneys and paella pans.
  • You are not allowed to burn any garden waste.•    When carrying out any maintenance or building / garden works, using tools that could create a spark, make sure you have a hosepipe turned on and close by ready to use if needed.
  • Anyone who rents their property should ensure that the renters know these rules and comply with them as the owners are ultimately the responsible party for any fire caused.

If you have any questions or need any further advice or guidance, please contact Ian McCarthy () as a member of the ISVH Volunteer Firefighters or contact the ISVH Bomberos at .