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Wednesday, January 4, 2012

CAL FIRE NEWS: Dry Winter has CAL FIRE on Alert

 According to DWR the statewide water content is at 19 percent of normal. Last month CAL FIRE crews responded to an increased number of wildfires for a typical December. 
Dry Winter has CAL FIRE on Alert  


Sacramento – With Yesterday, the Department of Water Resources (DWR) conducted the year’s first snow survey which has CAL FIRE officials concerned about increased fire danger. The lack of precipitation across the state has led to one of the driest winters on record. According to DWR the statewide water content is at 19 percent of normal.

Despite the fact that many areas of the state are experiencing cooler temperatures, the drier than normal conditions, coupled with wind events and low humidity, have frequently increased the fire danger over the past month. Last month CAL FIRE crews responded to an increased number of wildfires for a typical December.

“Fire activity in northern California during winter is very rare, where snow covered mountains and rain
soaked hillsides typically keep the fire danger relatively low,” said Chief Ken Pimlott, CAL FIRE director.
“We will be monitoring the rain levels over the next couple months, as it will be an indicator of the type of
fire activity spring and summer will bring.”

In response to the above normal fire activity, CAL FIRE has been able to increase its staffing using its
4,700 permanent employees with the help of CAL FIRE inmate fire crews. In many areas CAL FIRE has
cancelled burn days or even banned debris burning. The public is asked to be extra cautious due to the dry
conditions, especially on windy days.

For more fire safety tips visit www.ReadyForWildfire.org or www.fire.ca.gov.

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****REMINDER**** Every fire has the ability to be catastrophic. The wildland fire management environment has profoundly changed. Growing numbers of communities, across the nation, are experiencing longer fire seasons; more frequent, bigger, and more severe, fires are a real threat. Be careful with all campfires and equipment.
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