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Michele Steinberg
Quincy, Massachusetts
NFPA's manager for Firewise Communities: saving lives and property from wildfires
Interests: disaster safety, natural hazards, land use planning, wildland fire, mitigation, Firewise, community action, social behavior change
Recent Activity
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Within a few short months of signing a memorandum of understanding with US partners, the Chief Fire Officers Association of the United Kingdom is helping guide outreach and projects to prepare residents for wildfire. According to Alan Clark, Area Commander with the Surrey Fire & Rescue Service, with support, advice... Continue reading
Posted 2 hours ago at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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NFPA has gotten a lot of requests lately from our friends in the states wanting to know "where do we rank with Firewise?" Of course, they are referring to the numbers of active Firewise Communities/USA sites in each state. Check out this list, pulled from our data just yesterday. These... Continue reading
Thanks for the comment, Alex. We hope that USAA's example will create some interest in the insurance market for encouraging behaviors leading to loss reduction.
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I had a great opportunity last week to spend valuable time with California partners including the California Fire Safe Council staff (who serve as the state's Firewise liaison) and staff of the Sacramento Metro Fire District (who have hosted numerous offerings of NFPA's Assessing Wildfire Hazards in the Home Ignition... Continue reading
Posted Jun 16, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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It is kind of quiet in the Quincy office of NFPA today, as many of our staff are participating in NFPA's annual Conference & Expo in Las Vegas. And I'm not sure if it's simply because it's the season or what, but there have been an unusually large number of... Continue reading
Posted Jun 9, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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KRDO TV in Colorado reported on yesterday's field tour by members of the national Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network at their annual meeting near Colorado Springs. There are currently 18 Fire Adapted Communities network participants from all over the U.S. Woodland Park, northwest of the city of Colorado Springs, is... Continue reading
Posted Jun 6, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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If you live or work in the Sacramento area, don't miss the final in a series of great workshops sponsored by the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District (Metro Fire) next week on June 13-14. The fire district is in the process of creating a Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP), and secured... Continue reading
Posted Jun 6, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
A recent article in Insurance Journal highlights how California's early and dramatic wildfire season has prompted property owners to check in with their insurance carriers on fire coverage and safety. Western editor Don Jergler's article, "Wildfire Publicity Lights Fire Under California Homeowners," documents the flurry of calls and requests for... Continue reading
Posted Jun 5, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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Did you know that four U.S. states offer tax breaks to encourage you to prepare for disasters? I found out about this through the excellent Mitigation Nation blog connected to the Designing for Disaster exhibit at the National Building Museum. Through Saturday, the state of Virginia waives taxes on a... Continue reading
Posted May 27, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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Until 1998, when I first learned about wildland/urban interface fire and Firewise principles at a workshop, I worked for a decade on flood mitigation and safety. I thought wildfires were something that “belonged” to firefighters; I’d never thought about what people could do to prevent damage and loss. During the... Continue reading
Posted May 22, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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There are many potential pathways for wildland fires to ignite buildings within the WUI. These pathways (including both fire and ember exposure) depend on the characteristics of the wildland, the characteristics of the community, and the characteristics of the interface. The Fire Protection Research Foundation is an independent nonprofit whose... Continue reading
Posted May 16, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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The level of fire activity in May in California is not completely unexpected, but dramatic nonetheless. Fire officials and environmental monitors alike have been worrying and warning for months about the severity of the statewide drought conditions and their potential to give the fire season calendar a 180-degree spin. Forget... Continue reading
Posted May 15, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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It's not too late for folks to register for this weekend's Assessing Wildfire Hazards in the Home Ignition Zone workshop in Fair Oaks, California. Click on the image to sign up for this free training to learn how to prepare homes to resist wildfire hazards! Continue reading
Posted May 14, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
One of the first questions most people ask when they learn about the Firewise Communities/USA recognition program - or about the concept of Firewise safety action in general - is, "Will I get a break on my insurance?" Until today, the answer to that question was "No," with very few... Continue reading
Posted May 13, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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Our friends at FLASH (Federal Alliance for Safe Homes) are encouraging you to "Make Wildfire Protection Your Burning Desire," and participating in tomorrow's first national Wildfire Community Preparedness Day! Their blog at http://protect-your-home.org/ features a story from the Austin, Texas, area about a fire engineer who prepared his home and... Continue reading
Posted May 2, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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While this time of year may have many thinking about the value of their tax dollars, the Firewise program staff are thinking about the value of volunteers. Every April, the Independent Sector website publishes a new annual estimate of the value of a volunteer hour. The new rate is $22.55,... Continue reading
Posted Apr 15, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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Fire departments around the country have eagerly awaited the most recent update to the Fire Suppression Rating Schedule (FSRS) developed by the Insurance Services Office. This system classifies communities according to performance in emergency communications, fire response and suppression and water supply, and has provided these ratings to insurers for... Continue reading
Posted Mar 25, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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Dr. Christine Eriksen of the Australian Centre for Cultural Environmental Research at the University of Wollongong, Australia, has posted links to free access to several of her recent research papers on wildfire and social science, including "Wildfire preparedness, community coheshion and social-ecological systems," co-authored with Tim Prior of the Center... Continue reading
Posted Feb 10, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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A tip of our blogger hats goes to Bill Gabbert and Wildfire Today for alerting us to a newly announced set of projects sponsored by the USDA Forest Service and the National Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) that will help restore forest health, improve water quality, and mitigate against fire damage.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 10, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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Earn valuable Continuing Education Units (CEUs) and expand your knowledge about effective wildfire hazard mitigation techniques at the upcoming 2-day workshop on May 31-June 1 sponsored by the Southwest Missouri Resource Conservation & Development Council and the Missouri Department of Conservation's Forestry Division. When adequately prepared, a home or structure... Continue reading
Posted Jan 31, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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The California Fire Science Consortium is sponsoring its latest "WUI Module" webinar this Thursday, January 16 at 11 am Pacific. Join Molly Mowery, president of Wildfire Planning International, as she discusses actions and strategies that local communities are initiating across the country to be a Fire Adapted Community. This webinar... Continue reading
Posted Jan 14, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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Alert Fire Break reader Dick Mangan of Missoula, Montana, contacted us about the December issue in which he pointed out the significant difference between annual wildfires reported to NIFC (see "Wildfire drop but don't stop in 2013") in the top article, and immediately following, NFPA's Brush, Grass & Forest Fires... Continue reading
Posted Jan 13, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
According to the Colorado Department of Natural Resources, the state agency is now accepting applications for a second round of grants under the Wildfire Risk Reduction Grant Program. This phase will provide $5.8 million in grants to reduce the risk of wildfire in areas where human development and forested lands... Continue reading
Posted Jan 9, 2014 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
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To all the wonderful Firewise advocates in the 40 U.S. states, the local officials, fire departments and most of all residents who have worked hard this year to earn or to keep their recognition status -- congratulations! Becoming Firewise is so much more than a number...but our staff and colleagues... Continue reading
Posted Dec 31, 2013 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog
Attention fire departments: February 7 is the deadline to apply for the NFPA's Rolf H. Jensen Memorial Public Education Grant. The $5,000 grant is presented annually to a local fire department to support a community-wide fire and life safety education program or campaign. Funded by the RJA Group, the grant... Continue reading
Reblogged Dec 27, 2013 at Fire Break – Wildfire Safety Blog