May 1, 2021: Wildfire Community Preparedness Day

WHEREAS, according to the National Interagency Fire Center, in 2020, wildfires across the United States have taken more than 43 lives, burned more than 10.2 million acres of land, and cost over $16.5 billion in property losses; and,


WHEREAS, according to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, wildland firefighters battled 203 fires in Michigan on 960 acres of land and assisted with 99 dispatches to aid in suppressing historic wildfires in six additional states in 2020; and,


WHEREAS, human activities such as debris burning, sparks from equipment, and campfires are the leading causes of wildfires in Michigan, and spring and early summer are often the times of highest fire risk; and,


WHEREAS, Michiganders can help reduce wildfire risks by creating fire-safe spaces around their homes and property and following safe burning practices when disposing of yard debris or other natural materials; and,


WHEREAS, everyone can do his or her part to prepare for wildfire emergencies by making effective changes to their landscapes and homes as well as having the necessary resources and knowledge to  protect themselves from wildfire losses;


NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim May 1, 2021, as Wildfire Community Preparedness Day in Michigan.