San Andreas, Ca — The majority of all property in Calaveras and Tuolumne Counties, that the state is responsible for wildland fire protection, is considered to be “very high hazard.”
This is according to new Fire Hazard Severity Zone (FHSZ) maps put together by CAL Fire. In Tuolumne County, 64% of the land is considered very high hazard, 22% is high hazard, and 14% is moderate hazard. In Calaveras County, 58% is very high, 30% is high, and 12% is moderate.
California law requires CAL Fire to produce maps identifying areas that face moderate, high or very high fire hazard within property for which the state has financial responsibility for wildland fire protection. The FHSZ maps are used to determine legal requirements affecting property owners, including building construction standards.
“It is based on fuel type, fire history, topography, weather, and those sorts of things,” says CAL Fire Division Chief Steve Hollett.Calaveras and Tuolumne Counties have all types of fuels, some grassland, some heavy brush and some timber.” Hollet says there is a total of 891,000 acres between the two counties that the state is responsible for fire protection.
The fire hazard maps are not final. Upcoming public hearings are scheduled to discuss the maps before they are sent for approval in Sacramento. The hearings will include an overview of the process used in development.
The first hearing is Monday, June 25th from 3-5pm at the Cal Works Building in San Andreas. A second is Tuesday, June 26th from 3-5pm at the Tuolumne County Ambulance and Fire Administration Building in Sonora.
More information on the map update is on Fire.ca.gov.
Written by BJ Hansen