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Forestry officials to talk about wildfire safety tonight in Carolina Forest

Horry County residents can learn about making their community safer from wildfires from a state fire official, who oversaw the S.C. 31 wildfire in 2009.

Mike Bozzo will give a presentation on the Firewise program at 6 p.m. tonight at the HTC building in Carolina Forest located at River Oaks Drive and Carolina Forest Boulevard.

The national program is aimed at individual homeowners and their community organizations and provides them with information about landscaping, home construction and improvement projects.

“The risk for wildfire exists everywhere in S.C., but these communities lie right in the middle of the most fire-prone area of the state, according to national risk assessments,” Bozzo said. “The hard truth of the matter is, these days, we have to get more residents to take fire prevention into their own hands and play a bigger, on-going role in their own safety.”

The S.C. 31 fire burned about a 30 square mile area around North Myrtle Beach and damaged more than 170 homes, according to officials.

Thirteen communities participate in the program, including three in Horry County. Residents in Briarcliffe Acres and the neighborhoods of Walkers Woods and The Farm in Carolina Forest have adopted the program.