Burn permits are being suspended starting Monday in some areas of the foothills and mountains with the expected return of hot weather by the end of this week.
A wet winter has created an abundant grass crop, creating opportunities for increased wildfire dangers with higher temperatures looming. As a result, CAL FIRE has suspended burn permits for outdoor residential burning of branch and leaf debris in Calaveras, Tuolumne and the eastern parts of Stanislaus and San Joaquin counties.
Fire Chief Adam Frese says the dry grass could easily act as a fuse to heavier vegetation.
“The brush has really high fuel moisture, but for this time of year, the grass is primarily what’s carrying fires,” Frese says.
Frese points out that the state has counted almost 1,500 wildfires so far this year. He says it’s important that residents still clear dead vegetation around their homes.
“So, during this time when burning is suspended, still encourage people to create that defensible space but use alternative methods,” says Frese.
Frese says campfires within organized campgrounds or private property are still allowed.