An announcement earlier this year from the Kalispell fire department caught our attention here at Montana Community Management, and we want to share it with you.

First, a little background. Not long before the announcement was made, our niece Elise lost her home in a fire.  While everyone was safe, the home has had to be rebuilt. Elise and her family, with the few clothes and lone iPad that survived the fire, lived in a motel for several weeks before moving into a rental unit.  Despite the loss and the disruption to their lives, they were fortunate to have adequate and up-to-date insurance coverage, so all will be well in the end.

We wish, however, that her local community had a program like the one available now to Kalispell residents: a no-fee home fire safety review by the Fire Department.   Upon request, the Fire Department will survey a home for items that “may be considered fire or life safety hazards” posing a threat to the home and residents.  According to the Fire Department’s press release, there are no fees for the service, and no fines are assessed for hazardous conditions that are found in a home.  To set up an appointment, all a Kalispell resident has to do is call 406-758-7760 and be on site during the review.

We only wish Elise had had something like this available.  Kudos to Kalispell for offering an “ounce of prevention” that could be a whole lot easier to swallow than the proverbial pound of cure.  And kudos to anyone who takes advantage of this free program.

Let us know if you hear of other valuable free assessments or surveys in the Valley.  We’ll pass the information along.