FIRESafe MARIN News

Wildfire Safety Blog and News from FIRESafe MARIN.

FIRE IN MARIN: FREE 2 HOUR SEMINAR

Fire in Marin Flyer Fire in Marin Flyer
Free 2-hour seminar for Marin residents

Marin resident and FIRESafe MARIN volunteer Katherine Randolph provides an excellent introductory seminar on wildfire safety - "Fire in Marin" - free to Marin residents.  FIRESafe MARIN endorses this curriculum as a basic introduction to wildfire history and safety concepts for homeowners.  Your local Fire Department will be in attendance.

Come learn why our Marin communities are at great risk for a catastrophic fire and what you can do about it. Learn how to create and implement attractive landscaping that complies with your Fire Department’s Defensible Space regulations, how to make your home more fire resistant and what you need to know to be ready to evacuate if needed.

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Equine Emergency Planning and Response - Marin County

Wildfire Horse Evacuation Wildfire Horse Evacuation

Preparing horses or other large animals for a wildfire evacuation requires an extra level of planning, preparedness, and practice. Building an evacuation kit (PDF, 8 MB) for each horse, and having a plan for them that’s been practiced, increases the potential your horse(s) will be able to leave when you do. If the wildfire’s proximity does not permit the time needed to load horses, it’s best to turn them loose and not leave them confined in a barn or pasture. Close the doors and gates so they can’t re-enter the area. 

Learn more at the FIRESafe MARIN Large Animal Evacuation page.

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Frequently Asked Questions

FIRESafe MARIN recently began compliling a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and posting to our website, to help Marin residents find quick answers to their questions and to assist our volunteers and staff to provide consistent, accurate information.

Please take a look at http://firesafemarin.org/faq and feel free to email us questions you think should be listed at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Wildfires and insurance: learn how to be financially prepared - WEBINAR

Wednesday, October 10, 12:00-1:00 pm (Pacific)

Plan to watch this important webinar!

This year’s Fire Prevention Week theme is “Look. Listen. Learn. Be aware. Fires can happen anywhere.” More and more, it’s true that damaging wildfires can happen just about anywhere. Take this opportunity to listen and learn to insurance experts about what you can do today to be prepared should the worst happen. Presenters will cover the importance of doing an “insurance check-up” with your agent, how to understand what your insurance covers – and what it might not – and how to make a home inventory of your possessions. Take this opportunity to directly ask insurance experts your questions about wildfire and home insurance. It might be the most helpful 60 minutes you spend this year.

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FIRESafe MARIN Meeting Friday, September 14

FIRESafe MARIN will hold a regular meeting Friday, September 14 at 9am, 100 Marin Valley Drive, Novato, CA 94949 (Directions).

FIRESafe MARIN meetings are open to the public and are typically held the second Friday of each month.  Meetings start at 9:00 AM and usually last about 2 hours.  Board members and agency representatives will have an opportunity to provide updates at the "once around the table."  Members of the public may have opportunities to address the Board of Directors, time depending.  

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Drones and Wildfires Don’t Mix

Firefighting Aircraft Can't Fly When Your Drone is in the Air Firefighting Aircraft Can't Fly When Your Drone is in the Air

More than 120 wildfires are burning across 1.6 million acres in the United States. Firefighters aren’t just struggling to battle these blazes, they’re also facing the dangers posed by unauthorized drone flights over or near the fires. Firefighters across the nation have repeatedly been forced to cease helicopter and airplane operations because the presence of drones prevented them from flying safely. In these circumstances, the minutes or hours of flight delay could mean lost lives and destroyed property. 

Federal, state and local fire management agencies and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) urge members of the public not to fly drones over or near wildfires. Unauthorized drone flights pose collision hazards to firefighting aircraft and can distract pilots who are operating in stressful and challenging conditions.  A collision could cause serious injury or death to fire crews in the air, endanger firefighters and members of the public on the ground, and drastically limit the effectiveness of fire suppression efforts.  

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Fire-Prone Plants

Juniper is among the most fire prone plants commonly found in landscaping around homes in Marin and California Juniper is among the most fire prone plants commonly found in landscaping around homes in Marin and California

FIRESafe MARIN provides a searchable list of fire-prone plants that should be avoided in the landscaping around homes in Marin's Wildland-Urban interface areas.  Download a printable PDF copy of the Fire-Prone Plant List here...

IDENTIFYING FIRE-PRONE PLANTS

Use this list to identify Marin's most common fire-prone plants.  These plants ignite readily and burn intensely, and should be avoided (or removed, if noted) if present in a home's Defensible Space zone or close to roads and driveways.  If removal is not an option, intensive maintenance may be required to reduce flammability.  Your fire department may require removal of the plants on this list within 100' of structures.

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CAL FIRE Awards $200,000 in Grants for Marin Wildfire Safety Projects

CAL FIRE's California Climate Investments Foire Prevention Grant Program to benefit Marin residents CAL FIRE's California Climate Investments Foire Prevention Grant Program to benefit Marin residents

CAL FIRE informed FIRESafe MARIN that three grants totalling $200,000 have been awarded to Marin for 2018 wildfire hazard reduction, planning, and education projects.

Through the California Climate Investments (CCI) Fire Prevention Grant Program, CAL FIRE aims to reduce the risk of wildland fires to habitable structures and communities, while maximizing carbon sequestration in healthy wildland habitat and minimizing the uncontrolled release of emissions emitted by wildfires.

$71,288 was awarded to FIRESafe MARIN's Marin County Living With Fire Education Program which will expand upon and distribute a print education program in Marin County, with the goal of reaching all property owners and residents in the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) in all SRA and LRA jurisdictions in Marin (approximately 42,000 properties).$53,680 was awarded to Southern Marin Fire District to develop a Wildfire Mitigation Plan for the District.$75,000 was awarded to Marin County Open Spsace District to create a two mile shaded fuel break in Pacheco Valle, Novato, by cutting the annual grasses and removing dead and downed trees up to 200 feet from the structures. The community is actively removing all fire prone vegetation immediately surrounding their homes.
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California Wildfire Record Broken for Second Time in 8 Months

The Mendocino Complex Fire has now surpassed last year's Thomas Fire, which burned 281,893 acres in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, as the largest fire in California history.

[FIRESafe MARIN reminds all Marin residents that a majority of the state's (and nation's) most destructive - and now the largest - wildfires have occurred within 60 miles of your home...]

Catastrophic wildfires continue to ravage California, as one blaze nearly doubled in size over the last three days, making it the largest in the state's history. Thankfully, no one has been injured so far in the Mendocino Complex Fire, which consists of two fires -- the Ranch Fire and the River Fire -- burning around Clear Lake, in Lake and Mendocino counties in Northern California.The Mendocino Complex Fire has now surpassed last year's Thomas Fire, which burned 281,893 acres in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, as the largest fire in California history.  Altogether, the Mendocino Complex Fire has burned 283,800 acres -- growing about 80% since Friday night. As of Monday evening, it was 30% contained and had destroyed 75 residences. Exhausted firefighters across the state, including more than 60 from Marin, are trying to contain 16 major fires that are burning in hot, dry and windy conditions.On Monday, another fast-moving fire ignited in the state -- this time in Orange County, where firefighters battled the Holy Fire that expanded to more than 4,000 acres. That fire started in the Cleveland National Forest and evacuations in the nearby areas have been ordered, according to the Orange County Fire Authority.

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Is Your Landscaping Mulch a Fire Hazard?

mulch_fire_shredded_redwood
HOMEOWNERS SHOULD CHOOSE THE RIGHT LANDSCAPING MULCHES TO REDUCE THE LIKELIHOOD OF IGNITION FROM EMBERS DURING A WILDFIRE AND IMPROVE THE HEALTH OF PLANTS AROUND THEIR HOMES

Mulch has many positive attributes in residential landscaping. It reduces the water requirements of plants, cools the soil temperature, controls weeds and soil erosion, and visually enhances the landscape. But a major drawback is that many are combustible, which presents a huge problem in fire prone areas. Embers from an approaching wildfire can ignite areas where mulch is used. If these areas are adjacent to the home, it could be wind up to be a disastrous mix.

An evaluation of mulch combustibility was performed in 2008 by the University of California Cooperative Extension and the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension. The results from this project offer recommendations for uses of mulches in wildfire hazard areas. 

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FIRESafe MARIN   |   P.O. Box 2831  |   San Anselmo, CA 94979   |   info@firesafemarin.org

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