Due to late spring rains, the Tuolumne-Calaveras Unit of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection has extended open hours for burning until Tuesday, May 27.
On that date, hours will be restricted to 7 p.m. until 8 a.m. for the duration of the summer. Burn permits are currently required for all burning and are available at most CDF fire stations. Burning is only allowed on permissive burn days as prescribed by the Air Pollution Control Districts. As burning suspensions are normal when fire danger increases, residents are encouraged to finish all burning within the next few weeks.
In preparation for the summer season, CDF will be hiring back part of its seasonal firefighting force and staffed fire engines at its Sonora, Twain Harte, Green Springs, Blanchard, Altaville, Arnold, Valley Springs, and West Point Fire Stations as of Monday.
CDF also staffed the Columbia Helitack crew and a bulldozer in Altaville on Monday. Fire crews are currently fully staffed at both Vallecito and Baseline Conservation Camps. Additional hiring and station openings will take place in June.
As we go into the hot dry summer months, CDF urges area residents to fire safe their properties and eliminate dangerous vegetation around all their structures now while the fire conditions are relatively safe. Too many times, fires have been started by people trying to remove dry vegetation on their property for the purpose of providing a defensible space around their homes when the fire conditions worsen. For the fire safety tips and safe practices contact your local CDF Fire Station.
Calaveras Enterprise story.