CAL FIRE transitions into winter preparedness, burning now allowed in Madera County –
Cooler weather and recent rains have prompted the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) Madera-Mariposa-Merced Unit (MMU) to transition into winter staffing levels as of Monday, Nov. 19, at 8:00 a.m.
Unit Chief Nancy Koerperich says the transition to winter preparedness allows CAL FIRE to release some seasonal firefighters, reduce staffing on fire engines and close certain wildland fire stations.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.
This transition coincides with the permitting of residential hazard reduction burning in the unit. Open hazard reduction burning is now allowed in Mariposa County with a valid permit.
Beginning Saturday, Nov. 17, hazard reduction burning will be allowed between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. in Madera and Merced Counties with a valid permit.
Permits can be obtained from your local CAL FIRE, Madera or Merced County Fire Station.
The following guidelines are required when conducting a hazard reduction burn:
• Property owners conducting hazard reduction burns are responsible for checking the burn day status by calling the local Air Pollution Control District prior to igniting your hazard reduction pile.
Madera County: 1-877-429-2876
Mariposa County: 1-209-966-1200
Merced County: 1-877-429-2876
• All flammable material and vegetation must be cleared within 10 feet of the outer edge of the burn pile.
• Keep a water supply close to the burning site.
• An adult must be in attendance with a shovel until the fire is out.
• No burning shall be undertaken unless weather conditions (particularly wind) are such that burning can be considered safe.
• NO household trash or garbage can be burned.
CAL FIRE MMU would like to remind residents that creating and maintaining 100 feet of defensible space 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.