Legislation signed into law this month will reduce the spiraling cost of fighting wildfires, limit damages to homes in wildfire-prone areas, and very possibly save lives, Sen. Kevin Van De Wege, D-Sequim, said today.

Van De Wege’s Senate Bill 6109 supplements local building codes for roofs, siding, porches and vehicle access for homes to make them more fire resistant and provide better egress for emergency vehicles.

“These kinds of changes will make homes less likely to catch fire, reduce the risks and hazards to firefighters, and save taxpayer dollars by reducing state wildfire costs,” Van De Wege said. “In some cases, these changes can mean the difference between life and death for firefighters and homeowners.”

The legislation was supported by the Washington State Council of Fire Fighters, the Washington State Fire Chiefs, and the Building Industry Association of Washington.

“These modest, common-sense standards can make a big difference,” Van De Wege said. “They will increase safety and limit damages when wildfires occur.”