Neighborhood Awareness

This page provides information concerning the Firewise & Neighborhood Watch programs.  The Firewise section is just below this note. Please click on this link to go to the Neighborhood Watch section:


Have a Safe & FIREWISE 2016

Before your burn, please check the Wimberley Fire Dept. website for the latest Burn Ban restrictions at Click on the Burning Link. It is also recommended that all POA members remind any contractors working on their property of the HIGH FIRE DANGER and to please be careful when working outside.

Remember, River Mountain Ranch is located in a grassland and forested area that is extremely dry and where a potential wildfire could start very easily.  It was just a few years ago when a wildfire burned over 500 acres in a subdivision on the west side of Wimberley due to a child playing with matches.  

Use of the Water Park

Please remember that OPEN FIRES of any kind are banned in the RMR Blanco River Water Park.  If you are planning a picnicand plan to use the barbecue pits, please be extremely careful and ensure that the fire is out prior to leaving the park.

Remember, use of the Blanco River Water Park is for POA Members and their guests only and at your own risk.  There are no lifeguards.  Should an emergency occur, you will need to move to a higher point on Water Park Road since cell phone coverage is very limited or not at all in the park.

Also, please be extremely careful if cooking on a barbecue at your home.  Do not set up the barbecue in an area where a wildfire may start (e.g. tall grass, etc); Do not leave the barbecue unattended; Have a hose available and ensure that the fire is out when you are done cooking.

RMRPOA Board Firewise Committee

The Board voted unanimously to adopt a resolution formally establishing a Firewise Committee at the regularly scheduled meeting on 11 November 2008. The mission of the committee is to obtain and maintain national recognition of RMR as a Firewise Community in order to protect RMR people, property, and natural resources, from the risk of wildland fires before they start. Additionally, the committee will seek to instill community responsibility for planning, building and maintaining a safe community and an effective emergency response plan to a wildland fire.

The following persons have been appointed to serve on the committee in the function as indicated:

Committee Members
Neighborhood Watch/Firewise Chairperson & Liaison to RMRPOA Board


Data Manager

Cathy Kubica

Education & Information 

Nancy Carney



Advisory Members

Texas Forest Service Wildlife Assessment Volunteer


Texas Forest Service Representative
Kay Mayfield
Chief Carroll Czichos
River Mountain Ranch Certified as a Firewise Community

The Texas Forest Service awarded a Firewise Community certification to River Mountain Ranch on 24 January 2009. In early December 2009, RMR received a renewal recognition from Firewise USA for 2009-2010.

One of the additional benefits of becoming a Firewise Community is that RMR will become eligible to apply for grant money from the state/federal government to help pay for wildland fire mitigation activities (e.g., grass mowing along roads, support for upgrade of existing privately owned water tanks for Fire Department use, emergency fire exit, etc). Grant money obtained will mean a potential cost savings and/or reduction to the POA and its membership for doing those tasks that would have had to be paid from POA funds.

Additional information concerning Firewise Communities can be obtained at their website,

RMR Firewise Community Initiative 

The National Firewise Communities program emphasizes community responsibility for working toward a common goal: reduce loss of lives, property, and resources to wildland fire by building and maintaining communities in a way that is compatible with our natural surroundings.
With the location, topography, weather, density of home sites, and on-going construction, RMR is an appropriate community to become Firewise. At the summer meeting a majority of property owners registered interest in this endeavor. We followed up with an open meeting in September 2009 at the WVFD, where Jan Fulkerson of the Texas Forest Service presented a detailed overview of the activities and benefits.  Several folks at this meeting volunteered to serve on a committee to plan and follow through on the steps toward meeting the Firewise criteria.  This includes:

  • Working with a wildland/urban interface specialist to complete an assessment and agreed upon plan for the subdivision with community involvement.
  • Maintain and track this program, plan an annual Firewise Community Day, and submit an annual report to Firewise Communities/USA documenting activities.
  • Maintain current fire danger and burn ban status on our new Fire Danger sign at the RMR entrance gate.
  • Track the value of the Firewise activities done by residents and paid contractors.
  • Make recommendations to the POA Board for applications for available State and Federal grant money for major Firewise projects like the firewater tank, emergency exit road, etc.
  • Dispense pertinent information to all residents and property owners.
Recording & Reporting Your Firewise Related Activities

Your Firewise Data manager, Cathy Kubica, will be collecting and tracking all data from property owners for River Mountain Ranch for the Firewise Community Program. A firewise activity is really a simple way to acquire possible grant monies to improve the safety of our community. Examples of Firewise Activities include:

  • Home Improvements/retrofits to reduce structure flammability, i.e.., roof, siding, windows, fencing, sidewalks, stone wall, etc.
  • Clearing brush from property including dead limbs, leaves and anything that would promote the spread of wildfire.
  • Trimming up trees about six feet from the ground and limb up trees 10-15 feet over driveways to allow emergency vehicles access to property.
  • Firewise Landscaping using plants with high water content/low resins while still maintaining a beautiful non-barren landscape.
  • Cleaning gutters.
  • Alternative water supply/connections.
  • Adding a gravel border along wooden structures or attachments.
  • Mark driveway with reflective addressing to enable emergency personnel to quickly identify locations under intense smoky or dark conditions.
  • Creating Fuel Breaks–keeping grass levels low, gravel easements, removal of unnecessary brush, road surfacing/maintenance.
  • Volunteer time spent on Firewise Education Day, Website work, newsletters, meeting/planning time.
  • Any other effort including costs for contractor work which would reduce the spread or intensity of wildfire.
How to Submit Your Firewise Activities 

Your firewise activities can be submitted by e-mail to  For those without access to e-mail can also snail mail it to: Cathy Kubica, ATTN: Firewise Data Manager, 1021 Windmill Run, Wimberley, TX 78676. The preference would be by e-mail but we do not want to exclude anyone from participating if they do not have access to e-mail. Your submissions should include date of activity, description of the activity, number of persons working on activity, number of hours spent. If a Contractor was hired to complete any activity, include the date, type of work done, dollar amount for work done and contractor name. A copy of the invoice is not required but should be kept in your records for future reference. If you submit by regular mail, please download the Firewise Recording Sheet.

What We Do with the Data Collected

As a Firewise Community, RMR, is eligible to apply for grant money from the state/federal government to help pay for wildland fire mitigation activities (e.g., grass mowing along roads, support for upgrade of existing privately owned water tanks for Fire Dept. use, emergency fire exit, etc). Any grant money obtained will mean a cost savings and/or reduction to the POA for doing those tasks that would normally have had to be paid from POA funds. The FWCC will prepare documentation and submit applications for available grants.

Remember, you can never completely prevent a wildfire from consuming your home but by creating a defensible space around your home you can reduce your risk greatly and possibly save your home in the event of a wildfire. All it takes is a little time and effort while at the same time, creating a safer environment for your community and wildlife! It can also qualify for additional government assistance in further protecting our lives and property.

RMR Fire Protection

The membership of the River Mountain Ranch Property Owner’s Association voted in January 2008 to approve the purchase and installation of a 20,000 gallon water tank that would be dedicated to fire protection. Project planning had been initiated immediately after the POA Summer Meeting in June 2007. The project was coordinated with the Wimberley Fire Department to ensure that the tank and the fire connection valve met their requirements. The tank was installed and declared operational in May 2008. A slide show movie of the construction effort is located on the News page at the RMRPOA website.

We are looking for any members that have large volume water tanks (10,000 gallons or more) that would be willing to allow the POA to place a Fire Department Connection. Please contact any Board member or the Firewise Committee if you are interested in participating in this program.

RMR Fire Protection Water Tank – Important for Insurance Purposes!!

Installation of the 20,000 gallon Fire Protection Water Tank system was completed on 12 May 2008 and become available for use by the Wimberley Fire Department. For insurance purposes, it is called a “water source” and is for the exclusive use of the Wimberley Fire Department. The tank has an underground waterline that runs to within 10 feet of the road where a 2 1/2 inch fire department connection is located. The WFD has installed a Knox lock (fire department controlled lock) on the connection.

Fire Department Recommendations for Homeowners

1. Minimum 14 foot gates, 14 foot wide driveways with the roadway being at least 10 feet wide with 2 feet of clearance on each side. Trim trees above the driveway or roadway to a minimum 14 foot high clearance. We recommend a turn-around spot in front of your house or just down the driveway for Emergency vehicles for access and egress. Ambulances are equally wide and tall..

2. Your address is your landmark. Please install reflective address identification with a minimum of 3, preferably 4″ high letters and numbers. Mark addresses on mailbox and next to your driveway where they are visible from both directions on your street. Help us maintain road and street signs in your area.

3. If you have an above ground water storage made of plastic, fiberglass, or concrete which holds more than 500 gallons of water, we recommend that you put a 2-1/2″ NH male fitting with cap on your tank. The fitting should be male treaded with a safety cap and conform to National Hose Thread standards. We can draft out of your tank with our portable fire pumps or brush truck.

4. Please have a minimum 30 to 100 feet of defensible space around your house to guard against wildfires. With this space we can defend your home, outbuildings, pump houses, sheds, barns, etc.

5. Before you burn brush outdoors, please call the Wimberley Volunteer Fire Department at (512) 847-3536. Report to them what you are burning and where. Have an on-site water supply.

6. For gated communities, residents with electric gates, and commercial buildings, we recommend KNOX-BOX Rapid Entry Systems for faster emergency response to avoid forced entry damage. Visit for information concerning Knox Boxes, Key Switches, and Padlocks. However, you must order the lock through the WVFD in order to obtain a lock that is keyed for our fire district (see information in the column to the right).

7. For information concerning these recommendations or tips on fire safety, contact the Wimberley Volunteer Fire Station by calling (512) 847-3536. Ask for Chief Carroll Czichos or his deputy.

RMR Community Fire Protection/Firewise Activities

The Wimberley Fire Department has been a partner in all of the actions taken by the RMRPOA Board with regard to the installation and support of our community water tank.  RMR has had a number of small brush fires over the past few years, which thankfully, have not developed into fires like we see in California.  These fires were caused by welders putting up fence, by home builders, and by residents.

As a key part of our RMR fire prevention/Firewise program,  a Burn Ban sign was installed by the inner gate (coordinated with the WVFD). Our burn ban sign is intended to put residents and others on notice regarding the dangers to the entire community in the event that illegal burning takes place.  For example, we have property owners in our subdivision who do not reside in this community and who may hire workers who might burn materials on an absentee owner’s lot.  Without a burn ban sign at the entrance of our community, they might not know about a burn ban because they may have traveled to our subdivision on routes that do not have the burn ban signs that are on some but not all of the roads into the Wimberley area.  The board is much more comfortable strategically posting our own  burn  ban sign (i) because we believe that our sign likely will  be seen and thus  should help to ensure  that everyone who  comes into our community will be put on notice regarding currently effective burn bans and (ii) because we believe that our burn ban sign will have the added benefit of helping us qualify for Firewise Community benefits that will help to improve safety and quality of life in our neighborhood.

Reverse 911 Calls

The following information is provided regarding the Reverse 911 System used by the Hays County:

  1. It is an Interactive Community Notification System.
  2. Law Enforcement agency utilizes this in emergencies or upon notification from the Fire Marshall.
  3. All listed home phone numbers in a designated area on the 911 data base are called by the system and the same message delivered to all numbers called. If there is no answer at a phone number, the system will redial for up to 2 hours until there is an answer. It will leave a message on an answering system.
  4. No one is to return a call to the Sheriff’s office unless a new circumstance is present.
  5. Recommended that all households and businesses have a traditional direct plug-in telephone in case power is lost to the home or business and the cellular phones cease to work. This way, the residents will always get new messages delivered regarding the Reverse 911 crisis. Also recommended to have a charged battery back-up for cellular phones.
  6. The Law Enforcement agencies can utilize the NOAA weather/ crisis radio for community alerts.

Note: Reverse 911 system was utilized on July 13, 2009 during the Lost Springs Ranch wild land fire to alert residents to remain in their homes during the fire danger.

River Mountain Ranch Firewise Committee Landscaping Tips

The Firewise Committee has prepared a list of landscaping tips which can be downloaded from this link: Firewise Tips.

National Firewise Organization Landscape & Construction Recommendations

A recommended checklist for landscaping and construction is contained at this link: Firewise Landscaping Information.

Knox Box Information

Do you ever wonder how the fire department can get to your burning house if you are away? The Knox Box provides fast and secure access to your property in case of a fire emergency. It eliminates needless, costly forced entry damage to your gate. For more information, go to Knox Box or email them at Their address is The Knox Company, 1601 W. Deer Valley, Phoenix, AZ 85027; 1-800-552-5669. The WVFD recommends that you  should only use the Knox Box website for information as to the types of locks available.

The Knox Lock Box, keyed for the Wimberley area fire district, is available through the Wimberley Fire Dept. at 512-847-3536. The order forms can be picked up at the Wimberley Fire Dept., 111 Green Acres Dr., Wimberley, TX. 78676 (Office phone #: 512-847-3536.)

Firewise Committee Welcome Letter for New Residents

The RMRPOA Board recently approved a Welcome Letter that was prepared by the Firewise Committee. The letter will be sent to new RMR residents upon the purchase of an existing home or included in the letter of approval sent by Architectural Control to familes building new homes. The text of the letter can be viewed at this link: Firewise Welcome Letter.



Neighborhood Watch

NOTE: Neighborhood Watch Alerts can now be found by subscribing to NextDoor for River Mountain Ranch. For information on how to subscribe to NextDoor, please contact a POA Board member.

Neighborhood Watch Organization in RMR

We are also seeking volunteers to be Block Captains for the River Mountain Ranch Neighborhood Watch Program. We still need a block captain for Mount View.

The responsibilities of the block captains are:
• Be aware of any possible criminal activity or fire dangers on your block.
• Notify the police, EMS, or fire Department when necessary.
• Have a back up block captain for vacations, etc.
• Help to locate possible water sources, both current and future, on your block and help the Firewise committee determine who may be willing to allow the fire department to utilize their water source in the event of a catastrophe.
• Be aware of elderly or handicapped neighbors who might require additional assistance in the event of an emergency.

Neighborhood Watch Block Captains
Phone Number
Neighborhood Watch/Firewise Chairperson & Liaison to RMRPOA Board


Karen Nielsen
Hermosa Paloma
Jeanne Martin
Lone Man Overlook
Pat Krov
Mount View
River Mountain Road
Judy Nichols
Trail Ridge
David Strawn
Water Park North
Jean Richmond
Water Park South (cul-de-sac to River Park) & Hidden Creek
Candace Allert
Winding Trail
Marydee Calkins
Windmill Cove
Teresa Junkin
Windmill Run (1851 – 2300 block)
Tonya Peterson
Windmill Run (900 – 1601 block)

All residents of RMR, especially the Block Captains, need to be aware of suspicious activity and act as the eyes an ears for our local law enforcement.  Other responsibilities for a Block Captain are to notify our neighbors of wildfire, or other emergency situations.  If you see something suspicious and feel it is an emergency, call 911.  Do not approach or try to apprehend them, PLEASE, for your own safety!   Contact your Block Captain so he/she may notify the other neighbors.  This is what is known as the telephone tree. Also, if you have a primary and secondary contact number or e-mail preference, contact your Block Captain or the Neighborhood Watch Coordinator for this update.

If you would be willing to be a block captain for your street or just want to become involved with the RMR Neighborhood Watch, please contact a member of the POA Board.

Neighborhood Watch Emergency Information Form

An emergency information form (in PDF format) is now available for download by RMR residents. The form can be submitted to the Neighborhood Watch Committee Chairperson or to your Block Captain (see contact information above). If you have any questions, please contact please contact a member of the POA Board.

Neighborhood Watch Information Form

Letter Regarding Gate Codes from the Hays County Sheriff’s Department 

Please click this LINK to view the latest notice from the HCSD regarding gate codes.

Hays County Sheriff’s Department – Information for Citizens

The Hays County Sheriff’s Department has launched a new feature on their website and it is called “Spot Crime.” Either of the two links below will take you to the crimes that have occurred in Hays County with location information. The Spot Crime – crime mapping system is a tool for citizens to see daily updates of crime occurring in Hays County and receive email alerts if a crime occurs near their home or office.

HCSD & SMPD Info Sheet

A Few Web Sites of Interest

NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center site provides an interactive overview of national weather, watches and warnings, severe weather predictions, and weather discussions about various areas.

The Stormpulse site is dedicated to providing information about tropical storms and hurricanes. It provides a variety of information about current and predicted tropical development.

The Texas DPS Division of Emergency Management Situation Reports site posts information daily that detail what is going on in the state.

The Wimberley Fire Department website has up to date fire and other emergency information listed that is tweeted from the WFD Twitter account. You can also sign up to follow their tweets on their website’s Home page at .

Hays County has established an emergency information website at