Fire Dept. Says Brush Clearance Biggest Priority Right Now
Residents in SCV have seen the benefits of proper brush removal.
Los Angels County Fire Department Chief Luke Claus was on
AM-1220 KHTS speaking about the current fire danger in Santa Clarita.
“Our #1 is defensible space,” he told Hometown Morning Show
host John Summers.
Such defensible space involves clearing all brush within
30-50 feet of your home or any structures. Furthermore, the Fire Department
looks for vegetation to be thinned our or removed an additional 70 feet for
added protection, even more in a high danger zone.
With so many homes in Santa Clarita backed up to wild land,
it falls upon the homeowner to protect their homes by creating the void of
brush, which could otherwise serve as fuel for a fire.
Chief Clause said that for the most part, Santa Clarita
residents do a good job creating defensible space.
“During the Buckweed fire, there were a number of people who
saved their own homes by working with us and clearing that brush,” he said.
Here are some other tips you can utilize to help work with
fire crews should your property be in danger.
- Remove flammable vegetation and other combustible growth within
30 ft. of any structures. Increase to 50 ft. in high hazard areas.
Thin out or remove other vegetation an additional 70 ft. from
structures for a total of 100 ft. (200 ft. in high hazard areas).
trees, ornamental shrubbery and ground covers may be permitted provided
they do not readily transmit fire from native vegetation to structures.
- Landscape with plants that are drought tolerant and fire resistant.
- Maintain plants!
- Space trees and shrubs a minimum of 15 ft. apart or three times their diameter from other shrubs.
- Trees should be spaced to allow to minimum of 30 ft. between canopies at maturity.
- Trees taller than 18 ft., prune lower branches within 6 ft. of the ground.
- For trees and shrubs of less than 18 ft., prune lower branches to one-third of their height.
- Maintain all plants by regularly removing dead branches and leaves.
- Remove all stacks of combustible materials.
- Stack wood at least 30 ft. from structures. Remove flammable vegetation within 10 ft. of woodpiles.
- Located fixed butane/propane tanks at least 10 ft. from any structure and maintain 10 ft. of clearance.
- Identify at least two exit routes from your neighborhood.
- Post road signs to show traffic restrictions such as dead-end roads and height and weight limits.
- Clear back flammable vegetation at least 10 ft. from roads and driveways.
- Cut overhanging tree branches about roads to provide minimum of 16 ft. of clearance.
- Make sure street names and numbers are visible at intersections.