Like Smokey Bear says: With preventive maintenance, you too can prevent wildfires

3 minutes

The recent rise in catastrophic wildfires fires throughout the US emphasizes the need for preventive maintenance. From natural causes to human-sparked blazes, unplanned burnings can have far-fetching consequences that extend beyond the health and economy of the community where a fire occurs.

The good news: preventive maintenance is one of the top proactive methods to fight fires.

Forest-related preventive maintenance tasks for young and mature forests such as protecting areas and implementing sanitation practices can go a long way in reducing and containing wildfires — it’s a big job, though.

Luckily, there are tools to make the scheduling, tracking and maintenance of fire-prone lands easier.

Whether your department is in a high-risk area or you’re trying to cover more land with fewer people, having the right systems in place can help keep wild fires at bay.

Need data? It’s literally spreading like wildfire…

With historic-level drought and record-breaking heat waves in areas such as California, Nevada and Arizona, more and more regions have become susceptible to wildfires. Some key recent data to demonstrate the impact:

  • Wildfires burned over 7 million acres nationwide in 2021, the Guardian reported.
  • The National Interagency Fire Center data found that there were about 4,000 more forest fires in 2021 than average years.
  • The financial burden of wildfires reached $347 billion across the country, according to a UN report. That includes costs for fire suppression, health care related to the wildfires, disruptions to military operations, agricultural assistance, and risks to federal timber sales.
  • Wildfires accounted for $8.69 billion in insurance losses in 2021, according to the Insurance Information Institute.

With the growing problem wildfires present to communities and organizations throughout the U.S., it is clear that disaster response and recovery plans are critical. But perhaps more importantly, organizations need a preventive maintenance program in place first.

Seeing the forest through the trees

Wildfire-prone areas are often challenging to maintain due to the amount of ground to cover. Without a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS), routinely scheduling preventive maintenance activities on vulnerable young or mature forest areas get tricky.

A CMMS can help plan preventive activities and prioritize urgent tasks, such as:

  • Thinning and pruning sections of forests regularly
  • Clearing fallen limbs and trees from roadways
  • Removing debris to minimize flammable materials

Having the right systems to implement a proactive maintenance approach helps foresters track priorities in certain areas. A CMMS can help monitor the physical condition of particular sections, noting when the risk levels for fires increase or when others are in hazardous conditions.

With emergency preparedness, only Brightly CMMS can prevent wildfires

Wildfires are a growing reality, and they can affect millions. Implementing a CMMS to better manage your maintenance can help you run a more efficient maintenance organization, getting the balance right between reactive and planned maintenance related to forestry.

With the framework of Brightly’s award-winning cloud-based applications and trusted data security solutions, you can be prepared for whatever comes your organization’s way and ensure a smooth response and recovery.

For more about how our CMMS software helps facilities managers with business continuity planning for wildfires, schedule a free customized demo. But to read more about our disaster preparedness checklist for wildfires, download our Emergency Preparedness Checklist.

Do you need more information on how to prepare for floods, hurricanes, or tornadoes? Check out our disaster preparedness blogs.