Fourth of July marks the Truckee Fire Protection District’s 19th annual Pancake Breakfast | SierraSun.com

Fourth of July marks the Truckee Fire Protection District’s 19th annual Pancake Breakfast

This Fourth of July marks the Truckee Fire Protection District's 19th annual Pancake Breakfast event, benefitting the Truckee Fire Fighters Charitable Fund.

From 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. local heroes from Truckee Fire Station 92 will welcome guests to enjoy America's favorite breakfast treat, raising funds for high school scholarships, and community functions.

In spirit of the pancake breakfast bash, local firefighters want to take a moment to remind locals and visitors how to enjoy this beautiful place, safely, all summer long.

"Wildfires are our biggest threat," said Truckee firefighter and paramedic Nick Brown. "All it takes is one windy, dry day, and a careless spark."

Brown explained that though it was a wet winter, things are still drying out and we will certainly experience a fire season this August through October.

"We live in the WUI (wildland urban interface). Every year in California and Nevada wildfires burn down houses in communities just like ours."

Recommended Stories For You

He said wildfires send off embers that can travel up to a mile before landing in dry grass and igniting a fire, oftentimes burning down homes before anything can be done.

Though these instances are often out of our control, Brown encourages homeowners to be prepared, keeping defensible space among a number of other factors in mind during these hot summer months.

Brown shared the Truckee Fire Protection District's top five tips for fire preparedness and summer safety this Fourth of July and beyond.

1. Defensible Space

It is each resident's responsibility to prevent fires from taking hold around their home.

Start with the first 30 feet around your home: clear dead and dying vegetation, trim tree limbs to prevent laddering, and move all wood piles away from the house. Keep hoses accessible to knock down a small fire.

2. Campfire Precautions

Campfires are a lot of fun and part of many people's trip to the mountains. Remember that campfires should be kept small, within a designated ring at a campground or in a person's yard, only. Campfires outside of your property of the campground are illegal.

Always be sure fires are dead-out. The wind often whips up the embers and ignites the fire. Never have a campfire during a RED FLAG event and visit http://www.preventwildfireca.org to obtain a campfire permit.

3. Avoid Using Fireworks

Fireworks are illegal in our area and often are found to be the cause of wildfires. Brown and the Fire Protection District suggest keeping thing safe, and leaving it to the experts by enjoying firework displays during some of the wonderful local events around Truckee and Tahoe.

4. Evacuation Preparedness

Be prepared to evacuate if a wildfire occurs in our area. Plan what you will bring and where you will go before you have to leave. This planning saves time and will ensure that you get out before the fire gets to you; it also ensures that you will save the most important belongings.

5. Swiftwater Safety

Be careful around swift water this summer. Heavy snowmelt is causing streams to run high, fast, and cold. Always wear a life jacket on the water and consider rafting with a professional company rather than on your own.

Cassandra Walker is a features and entertainment reporter for the Sierra Sun. She can be reached at cwalker@sierrasun.com, 530-550-2654 or @snow1cass.