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CAL FIRE Braces For Another Busy Week

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio
 

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

Wildfire season is in full swing across California. State and federal fire fighters fought more than 270 wildfires last week alone. And CAL FIRE expects another busy stretch this week as temperatures rise above triple-digits in much of the state.

“It’s the combination of the dry conditions from the drought, the high temperatures, the low humidity, and then just a little bit of wind,“ says CAL FIRE's Daniel Berlant. “That makes the perfect ingredients for wildfire conditions.”

CAL FIRE has responded to nearly 2,500 wildfires since January 1st, 50 percent higher than a typical year. The state expects to spend more than $430 dollars fighting fires for the fiscal year that ends in a week – more than $100 million over budget.

”We have more staff than we would typically have for this time of year,” Berlant says.

The spending plan now on Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk calls for just under $400 million dollars for next fiscal year. It includes additional money for fire prevention, to create fuel breaks and brush clearance.

Ben Adler

Capitol Bureau Chief

Capitol Bureau Chief Ben Adler first became a public radio listener in the car on his way to preschool – though not necessarily by choice. Now, he leads Capital Public Radio’s state Capitol coverage, which airs on NPR stations across California.  Read Full Bio