Commissioner’s Corner

September 2018

Each month the DOI posts short Q & A installments of commonly asked insurance questions and responses from Wyoming Insurance Commissioner, Tom Glause. If you have a question you would like to see addressed or if you want additional information, please feel welcome to contact the DOI at 307-777-7401 or 1-800-438-5768 or at:  

I live outside the city limits.  What can I do to prevent a grass fire or wildfire this time of year?

Wildfire prevention needs to occur year-round, but you are correct that late summer and early fall are especially concerning as summer vegetation becomes dry and more flammable.  The DOI encourages property owners to keep vegetation mowed and trimmed.  Remove pine needles and debris.  Be particularly cautious with campfires, grills, and all open flames.  Make sure you have a fire extinguisher and on-site water for fire suppression.

What can I do to reduce fire risk on my property?

In addition to the things I said above, I suggest you install nonflammable ground cover such as stone or rock around structures and don’t plant anything within 5’ of your house.  I recommend removing all trees within 15-30’ of structures and keeping firewood at least 30’ away.  Don’t store anything under your deck. Propane tanks should be at a safe distance based on universal building codes and the size and type of your propane tank.

If I had to leave my property because an uncontrolled grassfire or wildfire, what should I try to take with me?

Let’s hope this situation never happens, but in the unfortunate event that you need to evacuate, it is most important that you evacuate safely and quickly.  If there is time, also consider the “Six Ps of Evacuation: People, Pets, Prescriptions, Papers, Personal Needs, and Priceless Items.”