analysis: safety rules give homes better chance in wildfires - clear roofing material
The sky became Orange and the remaining fire flew out of the campfire as Oney and Donna Carrell and Donna's father flew out of their heavenly home.
"I think, 'Oh, the house is finished, 'said Oney Carrell. '.
They learned something else a few days later.
Carrellls's home survived the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California's history, with several twisted window frames, partially burnt spout, and stubborn smoky flavors inside.
Most of their neighbors were destroyed.
Donna's father lives in a hostel in their backyard and turns to ashes along with several sheds.
However, the beautiful 1940 Studebaker they had fixed did not move in the garage.
The campfire carved through heaven seems to be random: Why are some houses saved and others burned?
As millions of California people prepare for another wild season, mclarich's analysis of fire and property records shows that the answer may be found in some simple things, such as the roof above the head --
The year their house was built
Landmark 2008 building code designed for the California fire-prone regions —requiring fire-
Roof, siding and other protective facilities-
It seems to have protected carrells home and dozens of others like it from the campfire.
That year was a critical moment in the deadly and expensive history of the state's devastating natural disasters.
According to reports, in 350 single, about
According to mclarich's analysis of Cal Fire Data and Bart County property records, the home built on the camp Fire path after 2008 was intact.
In contrast, of the 12,100 houses built before 2008, only houses escaped damage.
These numbers do not include moving houses, which, regardless of age, burn almost equally.
"These are good standards;
They work, "said Robert Reimer, a senior engineer at the California Association of Construction Industries, who negotiated with state officials on building codes.
However, despite this lesson, California may end up failing in its efforts to protect its home from the next wildfire.
Cities like Folsom have sprung up, 11,000-
Housing development has sprung up and, despite considerable fire risks, has the ability to bypass national safety standards.
The state provides cash incentives to enhance the ability of old houses to withstand earthquakes, and so far California has not taken any steps to renovate homes built for fire safety before 2008.
Housing construction fell into deep dive in 2008 and the recovery was slow, which did not help.
Raymer says only 860,000 homes and apartments have been built across the state since the regulations came into effect.
That's just 6% of the state's housing stock.
According to Cal Fire, there are as many as 3 million houses in various "Fire-risk areas" across the state.
Cal Fire wildland fire scientist Dave Sapsis says it's not possible to know exactly how many of these houses were built before 2008, but he thinks "that's their advantage, most people
"The situation is worse in rural California, where housing construction lags, but the fire hazard is the worst in the state," Raymer said.
On the Road to the camp fire, less than houses were built after 2008.
"Before the fire, most of our inventory here was (built)
Between the ages of 40 and 70, "said Michael zucolillo, a member of Paradise Town, a real estate agent.
"The average family here is in their 70 s.
This puts thousands of families at risk from the next hell in California, their timber
Shake the wooden tiles waiting to be lit.
"How will we deal with the existing housing stock built in these places?
According to Max Moritz, a wildfire expert at the University of California at Santa Barbara.
"For the existing housing stock, which is not built in accordance with these regulations, we have a huge problem of transformation at hand.
They built in structural ignition holes in this case and they were involved in the issue. ”——
Now living in a rental car company in Roseville, they designed their paradise home and did a lot of indoor work on their own;
They knew the home was built with fire safety in mind.
"I know we're in the middle of the forest," Oney Carrell said during a recent trip to heaven.
"Why can't you keep it going?
But even he was surprised by the success of their home.
On a blackened patio drain a few feet behind the house, he shouted, "I don't know why it's parked here.
"It is almost impossible to say exactly why some houses are still in heaven, while others are destroyed.
Landscaping has undoubtedly played a certain role;
Fire experts said the house was so-
It's probably better to be called "defensible space" than to be wrapped in a bush.
Luck is also a big factor because the family will undoubtedly be spared for the last time.
The second shift in wind.
Nevertheless, experts say maclach's analysis reinforces their belief that the fire in California
In an era of increasing vulnerability, security building codes may vary.
Daniel golham, former firemanS.
Forest Services researchers working at the commercial and family safety Insurance Institute in South Carolina say the California Code is becoming a model for other firesprone states.
"California is far ahead of the rest of the country," Gorham said . ".
"California is at the forefront.
Supporters say fire
Wear-resistant building materials are not particularly expensive.
Last fall, Headwater Economics, a Monte Bozeman consultancy, conducted a study.
And found "a new house built wild fire-
The resistance code can be built at roughly the same cost as a typical home.
But it is a difficult task for the Californian to renovate the houses built before 2008.
The state requires the owner of the fire protection area to replace at least half of the roof to install "fire-
Flame retardant material on the entire roof.
On top of that, however, there is nothing that forces the Californian to protect their existing homes from fire.
Some California cities have put things in their hands.
On 2008, the Great Bear Lake City Council, a 5,200-person community in San Bernardino County, passed a decree announcing that the roof of the wooden shake tile was "in serious fire danger" and ordering homeowners to replace it by 2012.
With state and federal funding, it offers up to $4,500 in cash rewards for new roofs.
Despite the end of the grant program, "I can't think of the last time I saw the giant bear's rocking roof," said Patrick Johnston, Chief building officer of the city.
However, most California people are their own when they spend tens of thousands of dollars needed to replace the roof or install the fire --
The state did not provide financial incentives for fire safety as the earthquake did --
Homeowners in the quake-hit area can earn up to $3,000 from the state in response to the quake.
However, there are signs that the state has begun to reform houses more seriously for the sake of fire safety.
A law signed by the former government last year.
Jerry Brown asked the state fire chief to make a "low-
Cost update by January 2020 ".
The state will then promote these reforms in education and outreach.
California may also start investing money on the issue.
Earlier this year, Jim Wood, a Democratic MP for Santa Rosa, proposed a new bill, AB 38, which will create a $1 billion "fire hardened housing revolving loan fund" to help
For Wood, the problem is personal, he is a dentist who spent weeks helping to identify the victims of the camp fire and wine country fire in October 2017.
Although the eligibility clause has not been specified in detail, the bill will provide a lowInterest and No.
Loan interest to help those who are unable to pay for the new roof or other safeguards.
"The economic situation in many small towns is not very good," he said . "
"We need to find ways to help them, especially if they are poorer.
"The fund may not be enough to move around --
There are not thousands of homes that need to be renovated, and it will cost $10,000 or more for just a new roof.
"In fact, $1 billion is not enough to repair each family," says Raymer of the construction industry association . ".
But he said it was "a very good way to start.
Wood said state officials must come up with a plan to distribute the money to where it is most needed --
Probably starting from lower.
Income areas near forests.
"Obviously, we want to affect the areas with the highest risk in the first place," the member said . ".
"Many of these small towns are not economically rich.
We need to find ways to help them, especially if they are poorer. ”——
Map "serious area" fire-
Safety building codes originated from two major fires a generation ago.
The panoramic fire of 1980 spread from the mountains to the city of San Bernardino;
On 1991, 2,500 houses were destroyed by a mountain fire in Auckland, killing 25 people.
In response, the legislature ordered the Department of Fire and Forestry to begin mapping major fire risks in California, inland and urban areas.
As a result, a map of the state's "areas with severe fire hazards" was collected, which included more than one-
Third Land in California
Based on factors such as topography, vegetation, and weather patterns, these areas represent the possibility that Cal Fire is trying to predict the occurrence of a Fire and the possibility that it may become apparent, said Sapsis of cal Fire.
The map gave birth to stricter building standards.
Authorized by the legislature
On these fire-proof roofs-prone areas.
Then, in 2008, the state made a more comprehensive plan.
The California Building Standards Commission has introduced a set of regulations known as Chapter 7A, which set strict rules for roof materials, siding, windows, deck and other elements of the house built on or after 2008-
Until the minimum specification of the screen that must be installed on the attic vent to prevent the afterfire (
No more than one quarter
Inch space between wires).
Experts say these regulations seem to be particularly effective in protecting buildings from California's increasingly widespread wildfire, where gusts can blow the remaining fire a mile or two in front of the flame's total wall, some of the most serious injuries.
"The window is broken, the vent is broken, the fire enters your home, and your internal structure is on fire," said Joe Poire, fire captain of Santa Barbara . ".
The implementation of building codes has brought some problems.
In the main rural area where Cal Fire is responsible for fire protection, any area designated by Cal Fire as a "serious area" automatically executes Chapter 7A code --
Medium, high or very high.
In urban areas with their own fire department, this code is usually used only where Cal fire indicates a very high threat.
The local government has the discretion to reject the name of Cal Fire, and Sapsis says that some city councils are upset about the state's map because of concerns that the code for Chapter 7A will increase construction costs, or for other reasons
However, an interview with local officials across California shows that the vast majority of cities and towns agree with Cal Fire's proposal.
City officials in Santa Cruz have extended building codes to coastal areas that have been ignored by Cal Fire Mapping personnel.
Colette Curtis, public information officer for Heaven, said the map omitted a small part of heaven, but the building code was implemented throughout the town. ——
Is Santa Rosa in danger?
Nevertheless, officials in some places are reluctant to impose strict building codes.
Even where the fire caused the disaster.
Before the explosion in heaven, Santa Rosa's Coffey Park was a poster child for the recent California wildfire disaster: on October 2017, the tubuss fire killed five people and destroyed 1,321 houses.
Coffey Park is not bound by the Building Code of Chapter 7A of California. It still isn’t.
Unlike some areas in Santa Rosa, the area is not designated as a "very high fire hazard" area by Cal fire.
City officials expressed satisfaction.
Although developers who rebuild Coffey Park are urged to consider a fire
Adriane Mertens, a city spokesman, said the city felt there was no reason to enforce 7A regulations nearby.
"It was very, very windy that night," Mertens said . ".
"There are embers blown (Highway 101)
The highway passes through six lanes of the highway into Coffey Park.
Montana fire scientist Jack Cohen, who helped develop the 7A code, said he believes that Santa Rosa is making "judgment mistakes" by rebuilding without security ".
In any case, Cal Fire is updating its map of Fire hazards for the next year or so, taking into account more complex data on wind and other climate factors, sapsis said, attractions like Coffey Park may be designated as highrisk areas.
Once the map is completed, under the bill that Brown signed into law last year, any area located within the "very high Fire" area of Cal Fire has no choice but to comply.
But there is still a way for cities to bypass national building regulations.
Take a look at Folsom, widely considered one of the most fire-prone places in Grand Sacramento.
According to the county's disaster reduction program, 44,000 residents of Folsom are already at "moderate or higher risk of wildfire ".
Now, the suburbs are building a development project called Folsom Ranch on a plot south of Highway 50, which will eventually have 25,000 people living.
Development was carried out on land in the past subject to strict national building regulations. Now it isn’t.
How did this happen?
A few years ago, the land was outside the city of Folsom, and Cal Fire was responsible for its safety.
The map of Cal Fire places the land in the "medium" risk zone
According to state regulations, the threat of fire is high enough
Safety building codes take effect.
City officials say there was no construction during that time when it happened.
As the city annexed the land and moved forward with the forsom Ranch, the situation changed.
Because the land has never entered the "very high" risk zone of the state, and there is no building code for Chapter 7A that makes Folsom Ranch develop, the city feels comfortable.
Fire Chief Felipe rodeitz said faursom officials are still willing to "strengthen and harden the possibility of our future homes ".
However, at present, the city only requires the Owners' Association to implement the "vegetation management" plan and install fire protection facilities.
A resistance fence is set up around the property close to the open space area, Mr. Rodez said.
Is Folsom in danger?
Rhodes does not think so.
He said the city will build two fire stations in the development and will be "able to curb fires early in the fire ". ——
"Inserted in the Fireplace", thousands of old houses in the fire area are more vulnerable not only to their own rights.
Experts say they pose a danger to new homes built by stricter standards.
"A small house built according to the new standards, surrounded by a pile of old things, is likely to be flooded," Sapsis said . ".
Heaven is a serious reminder of the problem.
According to the data analysis by maclach, the camp fire destroyed 4,100 of the mobile houses, whether they were built according to the new code or not.
It's not surprising, says Sapsis, because many of the mobile houses in Heaven are crowded together in the mobile home park.
"They pile up so tightly, like sticks in the fireplace," Sapsis said . ".
The lesson, Sapsis and others say, is that strong building codes are not enough.
In particular, experts say the community must pay more attention to how they arrange their community, allowing enough space between fire prevention and housing.
"In the name of affordable housing, we are getting the housing closer and closer," said Chris Dikas, a forestry and fire specialist at San Luis Obispo CalPoly.
"There's a house here --to-house-to-house ignition.
"The problem is not limited to population density --
A crowded city.
"I live in a rural community and I have 6 feet people who basically separate me from my neighbors," said Dikas, who lives outside of Morro Bay . ".
In addition, experts say California is working to enforce state laws on "defensible spaces" around the property.
The Act provides that owners maintain up to 100 feet of the defensive space around residential and other buildings "mountainous, forest
Land covered, brush-
Land covered, Grass
Land covered, or land covered with flammable materials.
This means keeping the trees and shrubs cut apart.
Within a distance of 5 feet from the building, the owner should remove anything that could catch fire: covering, plants, stakes, etc.
In practice, however, the implementation of defensible space law is at best uneven.
Raymer of the California Association of Construction Industries says most owners don't understand how to maintain their yard.
This country is not punished.
Only a few local governments have chosen to do so, Mr. Remer said.
This can be changed by legislation. SB 190, by Sen. Bill Dodd, D-
The national adaptation action programme will require the national fire chief to develop a "defensible spatial programme model" that can be adopted by local governments, including penalties.
This problem is beyond the property rights of the homeowner. Gov.
Gavin Newsom, who has found some rare common ground with the Trump administration, advocated more aggressive management of woodlands.
A sparse forest northeast of Paradise offers one of the rare victories of campfire.
The fire spread from the small community in Pokhara, and it was largely spared the northern part of Malaysia.
The reason is a series of forests.
Intercutting projects carried out in recent years and supervised by the United StatesS.
Forest Services, Sierra Leone Pacific Industry and volunteer Butte County fire safety board.
The Commission also worked with local residents to clear their property.
Calli said all the work was "done exactly what we wanted"
The executive director of the Council, Jane DeAnda, received a $1 million grant for the removal of fuel from forest areas.
"This investment in public funds is well worth it. ”——
The reconstruction of Heaven's "laboratory experiment" paradise means that thousands of houses will be built in the next few years according to the stricter standards promulgated by the state in 2008.
It represents the greatest test of the effectiveness of building codes.
"It's an absolute lab experiment for us," Sapsis said . ".
On the streets of Heaven, however, community leaders are taking a more measured view.
Town councillor Zuccolillo said that the asphalt roof and stucco wall panels may "give us more opportunities", but he doubted whether they could guarantee the safety of heaven.
"I saw metal buildings, metal and plaster buildings burned down," he said . ".
Nevertheless, there is plenty of evidence throughout heaven that the state's building regulations can protect property.
The other day, Sean Haier drove the car into the driveway on the West Side of Heaven, where he and his wife Dawn were raising two young children.
The first thing he did was to show the ultimate symbol of flexibility: an American flag, like a flag flying on his front porch on a campfire day.
Like a flag, the house still stands.
The herrs House, built in 2010, suffered a bit of burning and some internal smoke damage.
The smoke was severe and they were still in Chico for the time being, not sure they would move back.
Nevertheless, they are still amazed at how close they are.
A Ford car and a boat parked in the front yard were destroyed, only a few feet away from their porch.
Five motorcycles locked in a shed behind the house were destroyed.
Most of their neighbors are gone.
Herrs believe their focus on defensible spaces
Most of the house is surrounded by gravel.
The strictness of building codes may vary.
"The construction of our yard and house certainly saved it," said Dawn Haier, pointing to a small charred mark next to the house.
"You can see it trying to catch fire. ”——
Ryan Sabalow of The Sacramento Bee and Steve Schoonover of the Chico business-
The record contributed to the report.