Residents living in Inyo, Mono, and San Bernardino counties interested in a fire prevention program email

Monday, April 15, 2013

Time for Spring cleaning inside and out

The time has come for that annual ritual known as spring cleaning. Oh the fun, oh the joy, and for the outside at least, oh the necessity. For cleaning and sprucing up on the inside of your home, has this suggestion; “When spring cleaning or cleaning in general, break down your tasks into small pieces. Start with one room or even a small section of one room. This way you can see the progress and are not discouraged if distracted from the task.” This is also a good suggestion for clearing the defensible space around your property in compliance with Public Resources Code 4291. PRC 4291 is the law that mandates that properties be cleared 100 feet or to the property line.

An important step toward making your home fire safe and defensible is clearing that area of 100 feet. The 30 feet immediately surrounding your house is the area that requires the greatest reduction of flammable vegetation. The additional 70 feet of clearance is considered a fuel modification zone, which is used to reduce the vegetation around your home. Spacing between plants in this area improves the chances of stopping a wildfire before it destroys your home. The amount of spacing between plants depends on how steep the slope is and the size of the plants on your property. The spacing between the plants can help to reduce the intensity and spread of a wildland fire that may threaten your home and property while providing firefighters with the area needed to defend your home.

• Remove all flammable vegetation 30 feet from all structures.

• In an additional 70 feet, create a reduced fuel zone by spacing trees and plants from each other.

• Clear all needles and leaves from roofs, eaves and rain gutters.

• Trim branches six feet from the ground.

• Remove branches 10 feet from all chimneys.

• Use trimming, mowing and power equipment before 10 a.m. and after 6 p.m.

• Never use lawn mowers in dry vegetation.

• Use a weed trimmer to cut down dry weeds and grass.

For more information on Defensible Space and 100 Foot Clearance, visit the CAL FIRE website at or Remember, defensible space is your responsibility and can help save your home.