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Firewise Communities Recognized in Trinity County

Trinity County Fire Safe Council has been at the forefront of the issues related to wildfire awareness and preparedness since 1999. Trinity was one of the first counties in California to conduct an assessment (2000) and develop a countywide Community Wildfire Protection Plan (2005).

Last year was a remarkable one for Trinity County regarding communities' understanding of the importance of being firewise. The Trinity County Fire Safe Council kicked off a year of outreach and landowner involvement with our countywide Community Chipper Program intended to help reduce fuels on private lands. It was so successful that we completed it six months ahead of time, with good participation throughout the county. The many wildfires that ravaged our county inspired more landowners to think in terms of being fire safe and firewise.

Therefore it is not surprising that 14 communities in Trinity County have been recently recognized as Firewise Communities by the national Firewise Communities Program. This national program is a multi-agency effort designed to reach beyond the fire service by involving homeowners, community leaders, planners, developers, and others in the effort to protect people, property, and natural resources from the risk of wildland fire - before a fire occurs. The Firewise Communities approach, like that of the California Fire Safe Council and our local council, emphasizes community responsibility for planning in the design of a safe community as well as effective emergency response, and individual responsibility for safer home design and construction, landscaping, and maintenance.

The national Firewise Communities program is intended to serve as a resource for agencies, tribes, organizations, fire departments, and communities across the U.S. who are working toward a common goal: Reduce the loss of lives, property, and resources to wildland fire by building and maintaining communities in a way that is compatible with our natural surroundings.

Trinity County Fire Safe Council is proud of its association with the Firewise Communities Program and will be starting a countywide effort to update community wildfire plans with funding provided by Trinity County Board of Supervisors through Title III of the Secure Rural Schools Act. Watch for announcements in the coming months for a meeting in your community.

Pat Frost of TCRCD; Commissioners Larry Helsley, George Owen, Mike Williams, Steve Howard, Bill Britton; Interim Chief Scott Alvord