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Arizonans can reduce wildfire risks around their homes, Allstate agent says

Are you preparing your home in the event of a wildfire?

With several fires burning in Arizona right now, including the Slide Fire near Sedona, Allstate has some tips to direct flames away from your home in case one breaks out.

"Clear brush, trim tree branches and make sure branches are at least 6 feet from the ground," said Chelci Vaughn with Allstate.

She said removing removable fuel sources like dry landscaping, wood piles and decks and creating a defensible zone of 30 feet around your home will dramatically reduce wildfire hazards.

If a wildfire strikes up and evacuations become a possibility, you should make sure you're prepared for a quick departure.

"It's so important for you to already have documents such as insurance policies, birth certificates and ID cards," said Vaughn. "All those important documents should be gathered together ahead of time."

She also recommends conducting a home inventory of your property: Keep track of model numbers and stores where you bought your items. It's also a good idea, she said, to contact your insurance agent to determine if your homeowners policy provides for additional living expenses in the event of a mandatory evacuation.

And if it's determined that you need to leave the home, make sure you develop an evacuation plan that includes at least two exit routes from your neighborhood, Vaughn added.

Click here for more wildfire-related tips.

About the Author

School: Milligan College (Johnson City, TN)

When you started with Bonneville Phoenix: May 2008

Favorite sports memory: Houston Rockets 1995 Championship run/2006 Rose Bowl when Vince Young scored a late touchdown to beat USC for the National Championship

Favorite all-time athlete: Hakeem Olajuwon/Warren Moon (legitimate tie)

Favorite sports movies: Major League/Bull Durham


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