MOUNTAIN AREA – Cooler weather has prompted the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) Madera-Mariposa-Merced Unit (MMU) to transition into fall staffing levels as of Monday, Nov. 11, at 8 a.m.
Unit Chief Nancy Koerperich states the transition to fall preparedness allows Cal Fire to release some seasonal firefighters and reduce staffing on fire engines.
Current and expected weather and fuel conditions will be continuously monitored to determine any changes required in the preparedness level for our area, or at the regional level. State fire engines can be staffed if weather conditions change increasing the threat of wildfire.
Cal Fire is reminding all residents that burning remains suspended for Madera, Mariposa and Merced Counties. Fire danger remains high across the Central Sierra and the chance of large and damaging fires still exists. Even though the area has experienced cooler temperatures and a little moisture our area remains very dry. It only takes one spark to bring the danger of wildfire to our neighborhood.
Please take advantage of the cooler weather to work on your 100 feet of defensible space. Remember it is essential for increasing your home’s chance of surviving a wildfire. It is the buffer that homeowners are required to create on their property between a structure and the plants, brush and trees surrounding each structure.
Fall and winter are perfect times to create vertical and horizontal spacing between grass, shrubs and trees. Please trim trees to keep branches a minimum of 10 feet from other trees.
(Karen Guillemin is the Fire Prevention Specialist at Cal Fire in Mariposa.)