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Free Wood Debris Removal For Washington Fire Victims

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SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — Property owners that are Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) customers with large woodpiles left behind during wildfire responses last year will get that debris cleared for free.

The utility is offering this work to the victims of fourteen of last year’s wildfires, including the Washington and Caldor Fires. Company spokesperson Megan McFarland explained that due to risk to equipment and crews, many times hazardous trees have to be cut down during a fire response to restore power. Once a blaze is out, PG&E tree crews offer customers free chipping of smaller wood debris, like branches. However, McFarland added that logs greater than 4 inches in diameter are left as they are considered the land owners’ property and an asset to them. This new cleanup offer comes in response to customer and community feedback regarding that left-over wood.

“That was actually a hassle for them. They didn’t want the wood being left behind. They were having challenges getting rid of it and people didn’t like that, so we are revamping our program.” detailed McFarland. She continued, “We’re reaching back out to customers where we left large pieces of wood was left behind and we’re actually going back and getting permission to access their property and we’re clearing out that wood.”

The Wood Management Program is already underway, as earlier this year crews began removing and disposing of the larger wood from 2020 wildfires. Now the company is reaching out with phone calls, texts and emails to impacted customers from last year’s blazes asking for them to provide permission by signing a right-of-passage onto their properties.

The wildfires listed provided by PG&E below are included in this new program:

  • Anderson Fire
  • Cache Fire
  • Caldor Fire
  • Dixie Fire
  • Fawn Fire
  • Hopkins Fire
  • KNP Complex Fire
  • Linda Falls Fire
  • McFarland Fire
  • Monument Fire
  • North Complex Fire
  • River Fire (Colfax, Oakhurst)
  • Salt Fire
  • Washington Fire

McFarland instructed that there is no limit to the amount of large wood to be removed on the property and all will be disposed of in an environmentally friendly way. Also, crews conducting the work will always provide identification upon request. Questions regarding the program should be emailed to wildfiresafety@pge.com or call1-877-295-4949. Click here to download the permission.

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