• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
1m 45s

Wildfire protection program to end

By MJ Thim 9:34 PM May 16, 2014
PALMER –

A decade-old program in the Matanuska Valley designed to help people protect their homes from wildfires is running out of money.

“I’m very sorry it’s ending locally,” said Beatrice Adler, director of the Ember Program.

The grant-funded program has enough money to operate until September, she said.

“I know personally it’s made a big difference,” Adler said. “For example, some years ago the Su Valley High School burned and we were told by the firefighters that if it had not been for the zone of defensible space, that this program created around that school building, the fire would have burned into the surrounding subdivisions.”

One of goals of the program is to teach people to think like an ember, she said.

“If you think of a fire that started in the woods, perhaps by lightening or a campfire, the embers will come off of that fire and come towards your home,” she said.

Homes and the surrounding yards are fuel for a wildfire, said Michieal Abe, a wildfire mitigation technician with the program.

Abe goes out to people’s home and points out the fire hazards.

One of the things she explains are the dangers certain decks cause in the backyard.

“It [the deck] has nice wide planks with gaps,” Abe said. “This allows for grass or leaves to tender load underneath the deck and then you have the potential for embers coming down on top of that.”

She said people need to create defensible space by keeping all flammable things 30 feet away from their homes when the fire risk is high.

Defensible space makers include gravel, flowers and green grass because it keeps the ground cool and wet, Abe said.

Abe stressed to rake the dead grass away and not to burn it.

She said she’s visited 1,000 homes working for the Ember Program.

Adler said she is applying for grants to continue the program. In the meantime, she and Abe will continue to teach people how to declutter their yards and make it as green and safe as possible.

They said their motto is lean, green and clean.

Latest Stories

  • News

    Kodiak community digs deeper into Alutiiq history

    by Heather Hintze on Aug 02, 13:33

    With the summer sun beating down on them, students and volunteers rolled up their sleeves to begin uncovering pieces of Alutiiq history. For almost 20 years, the Alutiiq Museum in Kodiak has hosted a community archaeological dig at sites around the island. For the third year, the team is excavating the Kashaveroff site near Womens […]

  • Sports

    Chugiak avenges loss, beats Kenai in title game

    by KTVA Sports on Aug 02, 12:23

    It took a loss to Kenai in the first game of a double-elimination title series to spark the Chugiak Mustangs to a 6-0 win over the Twins in the Alaska Legion state tournament. Kenai, who lost in the first round to South on July 28, won four elimination games in a row to rise out […]

  • Sports

    Heads Up: Alaska coaches get certified in concussion safety program

    by KTVA Sports on Aug 02, 11:46

    Keegan Baker loves to play tackle football. “You get to tackle people,” said Keegan, who plays tight end for the Chugiak Mustangs U-10 team that took part in the annual Football Jamboree, hosted by Alaska Boys and Girls Clubs. Keegan has played tackle football for the last two years, and injuries are the farthest thing from […]

  • Sports

    Yukon Quest purse announced; officials will offer at least $115,000

    by Associated Press on Aug 02, 11:16

    Race officials will offer at least $115,000 to the winner of the 2016 Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race. The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports (http://bit.ly/1IxH2n4 ) that race officials announced the purse on Friday. Last year’s purse was $127,110, including $12,110 left over from the 2014 race. Fundraisers and sponsorships help fill out the purse. […]

  • News

    2nd annual ‘Stop the Violence’ block party: ‘We all can play a role’

    by Eric Ruble on Aug 01, 19:02

    The group We Are Anchorage hosted a block party in the parking lot of the Northway Mall on Saturday. The event, called “Stop the Violence,” aimed to gather people from across the city to take action against the recent violent crimes involving Anchorage’s youth. “It doesn’t matter what you look like, what part of town […]

  • Weather

    Weekend weather forecast, Aug. 1

    by KTVA Weather on Aug 01, 18:50

    Anchorage Expect plenty of sunshine on tap for the weekend as high pressure is in control of our weather pattern. This will leave our temperatures well above normal into the low 70s. Kenai Peninsula & Prince William Sound Mostly sunny skies with a few clouds from time to time will be the weather story for […]

  • Lifestyle

    Web Extra: An inside look at Alaska’s renewable island

    by Hope Miller on Aug 01, 12:23

    Planted on Pillar Mountain, Kodiak’s six wind turbines are a fixture in the community. At 80 meters tall each — a bit smaller than a football field — they perch above the town and serve as a symbol for the area’s movement toward renewable energy. In fact, Kodiak Electric Association — which serves the City of […]

  • Sports

    Palmer golfer takes bronze at Special Olympics World Games

    by Megan Mazurek on Aug 01, 12:05

    A golfer from Palmer is a bronze medal winner at the Special Olympics World Games. Garrett Stortz, 24, played in four 18-rounds of golf at Griffith Park. Stortz is a level 5 golfer and improved his personal best every day of play throughout the competition. It was something his coach, Scott Johnson, always knew was […]