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Long Fire Season Comes to an End

Cal Fire called an end to the 2013 fire season last week after a bout of rainfall earlier this month warding off any immediate wildfire danger.

On Monday, Dec. 9, Cal Fire’s San Mateo-Santa Cruz unit officially lifted the burn ban in several Central Coast counties, including San Mateo, which prohibits open burning without special permits.

Due an extended period of dry conditions this year, Cal Fire maintained a ban on outdoor open burning in the Central Coastal region longer than usual, from May through December. 

With the recent rainfall across the region, fuel moisture levels have increased to levels that allow for safer burning conditions. 

Cal Fire has learned that open burning suspensions effectively aid in preventing fire escapes and significantly reduce the risk and occurrence of large fires. This was especially important as these counties experienced low cumulative rainfall, low humidity, dry fuel moisture levels and increased fire activity all summer. Cal Fire continued to respond to wildland fires in the region over the past month including large fires in Mendocino, Lake and Napa Counties.

For information on complying with air quality rules regulating open burning, the public should review the appropriate Air District website for information on Burn Day status, burn allocations and Air Quality regulations prior to scheduling a burn.

• For Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District’s website go to: http://www.mbuapcd.org/

• For the San Francisco Bay Area Air Quality Management District’s website go to: http://www.baaqmd.gov/

Cal Fire reminds everyone that it is their individual responsibility to use fire safely and to prevent fires that destroy lives, property and our wildland. In addition, Cal Fire asks that all residents take proper care with fire during the winter period. This includes the proper disposal of fireplace ashes and the maintenance and care of safety monitors such as Smoke and Carbon Monoxide detectors.

The public is also advised that they are responsible for knowing current burn regulations and burn day status. Landowners and contractors can also be held responsible for any costs or damages associated with an out of control fire they initiate.

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