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Mercury Insurance and Wildfire Expert Douglas Kent Offer Tips on Maintaining Firescaped Properties

Year-round landscape maintenance plays a key role in protecting your home from wildfire damage
A home is like a vehicle in the respect that it needs a tune up to handle the change in seasons.

LOS ANGELES, Calif. (June 18, 2021) – A two-year rain deficit has set California up for another potentially devastating fire season. According to the U.S. Forest Service, no place in California is considered immune to wildfire, so homeowners need to prepare. Under most circumstances, landscape maintenance can either lead a wildfire directly to a house or provide a protective barrier. Homeowners can tackle landscape maintenance tasks year-round to best protect their properties.

“A home is like a vehicle in the respect that it needs a tune up to handle the change in seasons,” said Mercury Insurance Vice President of Property Claims Christopher O’Rourke. “Take the time to maintain your property throughout the year, and remember that an important step is to contact an insurance agent to assess coverage before you suffer a loss.”

How to Firescape Your Property

Proper defensible space management divides a property into three zones:

  • Zone 1 is the immediate 30-ft radius surrounding the home, which must extinguish firebrands and endure intense heat. Maintenance tasks include removal/replanting, managing weeds, maintaining efficient irrigation, caring for hedges, and managing terraces.
  • Zone 2 is the following 30-100-ft radius surrounding the home, which must be able to stop a ground fire. Vegetation management is key in this zone (and in Zone 3).
  • Zone 3 is the area farthest from the home, from the edge of Zone 2 to the property boundaries. This zone works to dramatically slow a ground fire.

Wildfire land management expert Douglas Kent, author of “Firescaping: Protecting Your Home with a Fire-Resistant Landscape,” highlights maintenance priorities for California residents living in fire country.


About Mercury Insurance

Mercury Insurance (MCY) is a multiple-line insurance organization predominantly offering personal automobile, homeowners and commercial insurance through a network of independent agents in Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Texas and Virginia. Since 1962, Mercury has specialized in offering quality insurance at affordable prices. For more information visit or and follow the company on .


Last Updated: April 17, 2023

For further information: PCG – Emma Rafanello (424) 903-3651 (

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