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California fires, arson?

Heard on the news this morning that the Cali fires were started by arson. It's enraging. I've heard of fire-proof homes, but I am not sure what it all entails and weather it's really totally possible to fire-proof a home. Has anyone done this? Or, is it just a matter of safety & prevention?

A. Spruce
Re: California fires, arson?

Fire-proof? No, fire resistant, yes.

It's more about prevention than "proofing". Prevention comes in the form of defensible spaces around the perimeter, and non-flammable coatings and surfaces. This reduces the likelihood of drifting embers starting your roof, siding, or perimeter grounds ablaze.

Timothy Beach
Re: California fires, arson?

For the past 14 years, I've lived in Taiwan where the standard material for housing construction is concrete covered with tile. Are there fires here? Sure. But, as far as I can tell, they always start on the inside, and you don't have to worry so much about a townhouse or apartment building burning to the ground.

I've often dreamed about owning a log cabin because they look and feel homey and are reportedly fairly economical to construct. But when I think about how many people lose their homes and often their loved ones due to fires in wooden houses, in contrast to my observation here in Taiwan, I begin to question the wisdom of relying so heavily on wood for construction. If a downtown high-rise apartment buildings can be made of concrete, then perhaps builders and homeowners should consider better fire-resistant materials (concrete and tile, or masonry)for single-family dwellings as well.

Perhaps all of us - myself included - need to re-examine our personal assumptions and requirements as to what makes a good home, and begin to prioritize shelter, safety and survival above sentimentality.

Re: California fires, arson?

I agree after visiting the British Isles and talking with our Uncle he laughed and said We make our houses out of papermache. I could really not argue with him compared to the mainly brick construction of his home land. We use want is readily available and cheapest not always best In GB the large forest have long gone the way of Robin Hood into legend and so they use the available clay. I have lived in both masonary and frame homes. I would take a masonary home over a frame anyday especially when made to modern insulation standards. The masonary homes I have lived in are all older than hundred years not always cheap to heat but they are still standing and sound. Walk into a 1900 frame home and it is typically a very rickety old place and not likely to be standing for another hundred years. To say that a masonary is markable better in California is hard to do with the earthquake issue a masonary home doesnt like to be shaken to pieces but a flexible frame home with the postive connection construction techniques used will. I am sure there is data out there that would show what is the safest home to live in for your respective areas dangers. Jim gemmm

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