MANITOU SPRINGS, Colo.- The Manitou Springs Fire Department is helping the community get ready for the potential of wildfires as we get closer to the summer by offering free property assessments for wildfire mitigation.

These assessments are free for any homeowner in Manitou Springs who wants to protect their home in the best way they can.

In these sessions, a firefighter will visit your home, show you problem areas and give advice of what to clean up or move away from your property.

“This program is designed so we can come in, offer suggestions, offer recommendations so that we are able to at least kind of guide the way a homeowner might mitigate their property for wildfire,” Drew Maurer, firefighter with the Manitou Springs Fire Department said.

Maurer said Manitou Springs is extremely prone to wildfire and implementing basic mitigation to a home could be the difference between a savable property or one lost to wildfire.

“The forest around us has not really had a significant fire in over 100 years and so what ends up happening is a lot of the ladder fuels, ground litter that happens from dead leaves and trees starts to build up over that time and causes some significant wildfire danger for alot of our homeowners,” Maurer said.

Not only will they give helpful suggestions but they will also give you an idea of what level of danger your home is in by showing it’s risk level.

“When we do a mitigation plan with a homeowner, we’ll add that address to our tracker and you can see that in real time on our website. It’ll also show you what your neighbors are looking like so if your neighbors are a little bit higher or lower fire potential you know at least what your adjacent houses might cause to your property,” Maurer said.

Homes with only one way in and one way out are at the top of the list for the most at risk. But they will also show you in what areas your home may be vunerable too and what you can do to prepare.

“All of those areas are areas we really want to protect but every home we want to protect in Manitou as best we can. Every home is as precious as the other so the more we can mitigate those and educate the homeowners on how to mitigate them, the better,” Maurer said.

The program is available all year-round and you can make an appointment by calling the Manitou Springs Fire Department’s business line at (719) 685-1444.