Getting a community engaged in Firewise actions in December, especially on rainy days, can certainly be a challenge. Yet, Waikoloa Village Fire Management Action Committee was up for the challenge and took it head on by holding a Firewise Forum on December 8 at the Waikoloa Village conference room. As a joint forum with HWMO, together they kept participants up-to-date about the Firewise Communities efforts that had been accomplished in 2016. HWMO’s Executive Director, Elizabeth Pickett, gave a presentation on the community-wide wildfire hazards that Waikoloa Village has and continues to face. Community Outreach Coordinator, Pablo Beimler, presented on the common wildfire hazards within close proximity of homes and solutions for addressing those hazards (i.e. defensible space practices and hardening of the home). HWMO handed out Ready, Set, Go! Wildland Fire Action Guides to each of the participants to follow along with the presentation.
Upon completion of the forum (Firewise Day), Waikoloa Village had officially checked off each of the requirements for Firewise Community certification. As of 2016, the village will be the largest Firewise Community in the state (and one of seven new communities this year)! What a year!