Recent rains and cooler temperatures across the region have lowered the threat of wildfires, allowing CAL FIRE’s Sonoma Lake Napa Unit to transition to winter preparedness effective Monday, November 16, 2015 at 8:00 AM in Colusa, Lake, Napa, Solano, Sonoma and Yolo Counties.
In the Sonoma Lake Napa Unit, open burning may resume, in the State Responsibility Area (SRA) lands governed by the Unit. CAL FIRE will not require burning permits until approximately May 1, 2016. Before conducting an open burn, contact your local air quality control district to secure an air quality permit and ensure it is a permissive burn day. For tips on safe burning visit the CAL FIRE website at www.fire.ca.gov.
As the region shifts towards a winter weather pattern, Sonoma Lake Napa Unit Chief Scott Upton encourages residents to remain mindful that one spark is all that is required to start a wildland fire. Though the risk of wildland fires lessens during the winter months, fires still occur. Wintertime fires can be caused by improper disposal of fireplace or woodstove ashes, neglecting annual chimney maintenance, and escaped control burns. “Most fires can be prevented,” states Chief Upton.
As drought conditions continue, CAL FIRE will maintain staffing to meet local threats, as well as strategically move resources to areas that remain at a higher risk level, if needed. CAL FIRE continues to monitor weather conditions closely and has the ability to increase staffing if weather conditions change or if there is a need to support wildfires and/or other emergencies throughout the State.
Statewide, CAL FIRE and firefighters from many local agencies battled over 5,900 wildfires within the State Responsibility Area (SRA) that burned 308,000 acres. This is an increase in fire activity, from normal years, with the agency responding to an additional 1,700 wildfires in 2015. As of January 2015, the Sonoma Lake Napa Unit has responded to 520 wildfires that charred 188,053 acres in the Unit.
Learn how to prepare your family and home for wildfire, and also to prevent sparking a wildfire at: www.ReadyForWildfire.org.
Official information blog for the Lake County Office of Emergency Services