FIREGUARD CONSTRUCTION; FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
As we approach yet another dry season, let us be proactive and protect our properties from the possibility of veld fires. One way of achieving this is through contructing fireguards right round your properties.
What is a fireguard?
It is a belt of not less than 9 metres that is cleared of all inflammable materials in order to control the spread of veld fires.Fireguards are essential for protecting and safeguarding veldts, property and life of various living organisms including human beings. However, many land users or property owners do not prioritize the construction of fireguards. It is a strict statutory requirement that any land user or property owner should put in place fire prevention mechanisms and one of them is the construction of standard fireguards.
When are they constructed?
Fireguards should be constructed before the end of the month of June every year. The use of tractors, ox-drawn ploughs and hoes is highly recommended so as to get rid of all flammable material. If fire is to be used as a tool in fireguard construction, the burning should be done when the weather conditions are conducive as advised by the Meteorological Services Department (MSD) for controlled burning.
Where are they constructed?
Fireguards should be constructed around farms, paddocks, woodlots, orchards, nurseries croplands and boundary fences. Construction of fireguards should be on the calendar of all land users and property owners each and every year to comply with legal provisions.
What is a standard fireguard?
A standard fireguard is one which measures at least 9metres wide on either side of a boundary line/fence. It then follows that between two properties, the fireguard becomes at least 18metres wide. Internal fireguards of at least 4, 5 metres should be constructed in addition to the existing pathways and roads to ensure extra- protection of properties and other valuables. The width of the fireguards should be increased if the area is surrounded by tall grass.
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