The Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District, along with other Sacramento Regional fire agencies will transition into wildland fire season on May 3, 2021. This transition coincides with todays Red Flag conditions. The lack of regional precipitation this winter season has led to an already active wildland fire season much earlier than normal, as our fire fuels are at an increased state of
dryness compared to what is normally seen this time of year.
The transition to wildland fire season includes enhanced dispatch levels on vegetation fire incidents throughout the season, and additional increases on red flag days beginning immediately such as the dispatch of water tenders and command officers. Metro Fire’s specialized equipment (bulldozers and helicopters) is already available regionally on an on-call basis and will be staffed daily beginning May 15th or earlier. Additional units may be up-staffed during red flag conditions.
Our exterior mitigation hazard program is already active as of April 21. Any parcel owner not meeting the standards as described at https://metrofire.ca.gov/departments/crrd/WeedAbatement may receive a fine or be held liable for a fire on their unabated property that extends to other parcels. Additionally, when performing abatement parcel owners should do it as early in the morning and with non-sparking trimmers and mowers (such as those with a string instead of a metal blade), as any spark can cause dry vegetation to ignite and rapidly spread.
Metro Fire will also begin conducting planned hazard mitigation burns throughout the region in May. These will only occur during periods without high fire hazards and when conditions and resources ensure a safe operation. Those who live or work in the area will be notified by a variety of methods including postcards, social media, and print, radio, and television media.
Like you, we are stunned by the fire conditions we are already facing so early in this fire season, as we are currently experiencing today throughout Sacramento County at the time of this release. We plead for your help to stress to our region and market the need to adhere to safe practices related to clearing dead and dry vegetation, to ensure safe practices during fire season (not allowing trailer chains to drag and following local regulations on campfires/open flames), and in the event of a vegetation fire to have a plan. An excellent and comprehensive resource for all in California is www.readyforwildfire.org.