Cal Fire transitions out of peak fire season, burn permits not required starting Monday |

Cal Fire transitions out of peak fire season, burn permits not required starting Monday

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Cooler temperatures and increased relative humidity across the region have lowered the threat of wildfires allowing the Amador-El Dorado Unit of Cal Fire to transition out of peak fire season. 

Effective at 8 a.m. Monday, Nov. 21, Cal Fire will no longer require a burn permit in Alpine, Amador, El Dorado, Sacramento, and San Joaquin Counties.

“Now is the time to create defensible space for next season. Although Cal Fire burn permits will not be required after Nov. 21, I want to remind the public to check with their appropriate county air quality district for any permits they may require prior to burning,” said Unit Chief Mike Blankenheim.

During the cooler winter months, Cal Fire will continue to actively focus efforts on fire prevention and fuels treatment activities as guided by the State’s Strategic Fire Plan and Unit fire plans. These activities are aimed at reducing the impacts of large, damaging wildfires, public safety and improving overall forest health.

Residents are urged to continue to take precautions outdoors to prevent sparking a wildfire. A leading cause of wildfires this time of year is from escaped landscape debris burning. 

Before burning, ensure it is a permissive burn day by contacting the local air quality district (listed below) and make sure that you have all required burn permits during burning, make sure piles landscape debris are no larger than 4 feet in diameter, provide 10 feet of clearance down to bare mineral soil around the burn pile and ensure that a responsible adult attends all times with a water source and a shovel.

For county air quality Information in the Tahoe Basin, call 530-621-5842 or 888-322-2876.

The Tahoe Fire and Fuels Team is also reminding residents and visitors to celebrate Thanksgiving safely.

Decorating for the holidays is a tradition in homes all over the world but be sure to decorate safely. According to NFPA, almost one third of home Christmas tree fires are caused by electrical problems and more than two of every five decoration fires happen because decorations are placed too close to a heat source.

Holiday Decorating Tips:

  • Be careful with holiday decorations. Choose decorations that are flame resistant, flame retardant, or flameless.
  • Keep lit candles away from decorations and other flammable materials or use battery powered flameless candles.
  • Some decorative lights are only for indoor or outdoor use, but not both.
  • Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections. Read manufacturer’s instructions for maximum number of light strands to connect.
  • Never plug more than two appliances into an outlet at once.
  • Use clips, not nails, to hang lights so the cords do not get damaged.
  • Do not block window or door exits with decorations.
  • Test your smoke alarms and tell guests about your home fire escape plan.
  • Keep children and pets away from lit candles.
  • Keep matches and lighters up high in a locked cabinet.
  • If you’re smoking outside, please make sure to properly dispose of your cigarette in a large, deep ashtray a safe distance away from any vegetation.

 Kitchen and Cooking Safety Tips:

  • Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stovetop so you can keep an eye on the food.
  • Keep children away from the stove. The stove will be hot, and kids should stay 3 feet away.
  • Make sure kids stay away from hot food and liquids. The steam or splash from vegetables, gravy or coffee could cause serious burns.
  • Keep the floor clear so you don’t trip over kids, toys, pocketbooks, or bags.
  • Keep knives out of the reach of children.
  • Be sure electrical cords from electric knives, coffee makers, plate warmers or mixers are not dangling off the counter within easy reach of a child.

For a small (grease) cooking fire and decide to fight the fire:

  • On the stovetop, smother the flames by sliding a lid over the pan and turning off the burner. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
  • For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.

 If there is any doubt about fighting a small fire:

  • Just get out. When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
  • Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number from outside the home.

For more home safety tips, visit

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