Why California should consider Australia’s ‘Prepare, stay and defend’ wildfire policy

SHOULD I STAY OR SHOULD I GO? No, it’s not the Clash singing punk anthems…

Why California should consider Australia’s ‘Prepare, stay and defend’ wildfire policy

By Sarah Yang, Media Relations | 26 February 2009

BERKELEY — Even as debate rages over the safety of Australia’s “Prepare, stay and defend, or leave early” policy of wildfire defense, fire researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and in Australia say that the strategy is worth consideration in California and other regions in the United States.

Questions about the policy, which encourages able residents to stay home and actively defend their property from wildfires, are being renewed in the wake of Australia’s devastating fires, which began on Feb. 7 and killed 210 people, burned down 1,800 homes and scorched 1,500 square miles of land.

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