What’s New

Be Ice Smart – Know when the Ice is Safe

With the cold weather upon us, folks, espcially children, will begin to venture out onto ice covered ponds. Be aware that it takes more then a cold snap to form ice safe enough to walk on. It takes over 3 inches of ice thickness before it is safe for an individual to walk on the ice; over 4 inches for a group. As the cold weather approaches, learn how to be safe on the Ice. To read more, go to
10 Tips – Know when the Ice is Safe

Holiday Fire Safety tips-A recent study showed that within three seconds of ignition, a dry scotch pine is completely ablaze

It is easy to think that a home fire would never happen to your family, but there are more potential risks around your home than you may think – especially during the winter months. Fires grow so quickly that it can take just seconds for a spark to fill a room with toxic smoke. To read more, go to
Holiday Safety Tips

Philomont Volunteer Fire Department and Philomont Community mourn passing of Founder and Life Member (55+ years) Truman Hawes

On Monday November 26, 2012 Truman Hawes, a founding and life member (55+ years) of the Philomont Volunteer Fire Department passed away surrounded by family and friends.  The viewing will be held Friday November 30, 2012 from 7:00-9:00pm at Hall’s Funeral Home in Purcellvile, VA.  The Funeral Service will be held on Saturday December 1, 2012 at 2:00pm at Hall’s Funeral Home.  A burial service will be held following the funeral service at Ebenezer Cemetery in Bloomfield, VA.  A reception is planned at the Roszell United Methodist Church following the burial service.  Everyone is invited.

Effective October 1, 2012 through February 15, 2013 open air fires are permitted

Effective October 1, 2012 through February 15, 2013, open air fires are permitted. Open burning is not-allowed/prohibited year-round within the town limits of Leesburg, Lovettsville, Middleburg, Purcellville, and Round Hill. Open burning that is offensive or objectionable because of smoke or odor emissions or when atmosphere conditions or local circumstances make such fires hazardous may be prohibited and/or required to be extinguished.

For more information, go to Loudoun County Open Burning Guidelines

Rural Homeowners Insurance Policies experience significant increase in premiums

Rural Homeowners should expect to see a significant increase (125-300%) in their homeowners insurance policy due to changes in ISO Insurance Ratings for Water Supply. The criteria used to compute the ISO Insurance Rating has changed to no longer include criteria such as proximity to dry hydrants, cisterns, and accessible ponds. In its place is the proximity to a “wet” fire hydrant which for many in Philomont is Purcellville, VA

In simple terms, the ISO Rating is based on 3 criteria – (1) Fire Alarms – 10% is based on how well the fire department receives fire alarms and dispatches its fire-fighting resources. (2) Engine Companies – 50% is based on the number of engine companies and the amount of water a community needs to fight a fire, (3) Water Supply – 40% is based on the community’s water supply.
To learn more about the ISO Rating, go to go to Fire Suppression Rating Schedule

How to Conduct a Home Fire Drill

Conducting a home fire drill every so often is essential preparation for you and your family in the event of a real fire. Being prepared in the event of a House Fire can mean the difference between life and death, and should it happen, there is precious little time to waste. For tips and guidelines on how to prepare for and conduct a home fire drill. Go to How to Conduct a Home Fire Drill for more detailed information.

Are You Prepared for an Emergency

With winter weather approaching, experts say every person and every family should be prepared. Emergency officials said everyone should have three things: an emergency kit, a communications plan, information. Experts state that some of the basics that belong in the kits include: water, food, first aid supplies, bedding, clothes, tools, battery-powered radio or TV. See
FEMA – A Guide to Citizen Preparedness
VA Dept of Emergency Management – Preparing for Disasters

Virginia Law – Drivers to yield right-of-way or reduce speed when approaching stationary emergency vehicles on highways

Virginia State Code § 46.2-921.1 states drivers are to yield right-of-way or reduce speed when approaching stationary emergency vehicles on highways. The driver of any motor vehicle, upon approaching a stationary emergency vehicle, as defined in § 46.2-920, that is displaying a flashing, blinking, or alternating emergency light or lights as provided in §§ 46.2-1022, 46.2-1023, and 46.2-1024, shall (i) on a highway having at least four lanes, at least two of which are intended for traffic proceeding as the approaching vehicle, proceed with caution and, if reasonable, with due regard for safety and traffic conditions, yield the right-of-way by making a lane change into a lane not adjacent to the stationary emergency vehicle or (ii) if changing lanes would be unreasonable or unsafe, proceed with due caution and maintain a safe speed for highway conditions.

Violation of any provision of this section shall constitute a Class 1 misdemeanor. If the violation resulted in damage to property of another person, the court may, in addition, order the suspension of the driver’s privilege to operate a motor vehicle for not more than one year. If the violation resulted in injury to another person, the court may, in addition to any other penalty imposed, order the suspension of the driver’s privilege to operate a motor vehicle for not more than two years. If the violation resulted in the death of another person, the court may, in addition to any other penalty imposed, order the suspension of the driver’s privilege to operate a motor vehicle for two years.

Go to VA Slow Down Move Over Law for more information.

Alert Loudoun – a tool to keep citizens informed

Loudoun County, VA uses the Roam Secure Alert Network to immediately contact you during a major crisis or emergency and also to keep you informed about other news and events in Loudoun County. Alert Loudoun can deliver important emergency alerts, notifications and updates to you via:

  • E-mail (work, home, other)
  • Cell phone (via SMS)
  • Pager
  • Smartphone/PDA (BlackBerry, Treo & other handhelds)
    See Alert Loudoun for more detailed information.

FEMA Announces Citizen Corps Opportunities for America’s for First Responders:

FEMA Announces New Citizen Corps Publication for Leaders of First Responder Organizations. The “Citizen Corps Opportunities for America’s First Responders” brochure provides a sampling of citizen advocate/volunteer activities, which can potentially assist local fire and EMS departments. This brochure is the result of a successful joint effort among federal, state, local, and private fire-service personnel, including FEMA and USFA staff. Go to FEMA/USFA Citizens Corp announcement for more detailed information.

NOAA’s National Weather Service Turn Around – Don’t Drown Program (TM)

Each year, more deaths occur due to flooding than from any other thunderstorm related hazard. Why? The main reason is people underestimate the force and power of water. Many of the deaths occur in automobiles as they are swept downstream. Of these drownings, many are preventable, but too many people continue to drive around the barriers that warn you the road is flooded. Whether you are driving or walking, if you come to a flooded road, you will not know the depth of the water nor will you know the condition of the road under the water.
See the following NOAA NWS web sites for more information
Turn Around Don’t Drown (TM)

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