How to protect your home against brush fires - FOX 13 News

How to protect your home against brush fires

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TAMPA (FOX 13) -

When a brush fire broke out in the Fishhawk Ranch neighborhood in Lithia last Friday, Victor Sanchez had to get the water hose out to protect his home.

"It was probably three feet away, and we were still here with hoses and pool pump water coming out," said Sanchez.

His experience paled in comparison to that of his neighbor just four doors down.

David Camm's fence paid a pretty heavy price for being in the path of the flames.

"This PVC fence just gone, just melted," said Camm. "It's very serious, and it's very scary."

Firefighters have concluded that kids playing with fireworks caused Friday's fire in Lithia.

However, the way it spread so quickly had everything to do with conditions in the area.

"It's just so dry, right now everything is so dry and brush area is so dry and also it's windy too so the combination of those two things can cause brush fires," said Ronnie Rivera of Hillsborough County Fire Rescue.

We've had a lot of Brush fires in this area the last few days.

On Friday, a second brush fire broke out in Weeki Wachee, On Saturday, 30 acres in Ruskin were burned and Monday firefighters returned to Lithia to fight a small blaze on Lithia Pinecrest.

Fire officials say there are ways to keep your home safe.

They say try to create a defensible space of 30 feet around your home by trimming trees and brush.

You should remove dead wood debris and low tree branches beyond 30 feet.

They also say try not to put cigarettes out near dry land and keep a fire extinguisher nearby if you're having a cookout.

"Just be aware of your surroundings," said Rivera.

Because if these fires are any indication, we know a wildfire can strike quicker than you think.

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