Community-wide wildfire protection
Laguna Beach, Calif.- The South Laguna Fuel Modification Project will begin this month and tie in with existing fuel modification areas to the north and south, providing consistent community-wide wildfire protection in Fuel Modification Zones through the City. This project is funded by a grant provided through Assembly Bill 109 (AB109) sponsored by Assemblywoman Petrie-Norris and is administered by the California Department of Natural Resources.
The City has successfully obtained all required local and California Coastal Commission permits and crews will begin with fuel treatment in the upcoming weeks. All work will be conducted by hand methods, goats or mechanical treatment methods are not being utilized.
Contracted crews, under the supervision of Laguna Beach Fire Department staff and Environmental Monitors from the Laguna Canyon Foundation will begin thinning and removing dead and non-native vegetation from slopes behind homes beginning near Hillhaven Ranch Way (Zone 21) and will progress northerly towards Ocean View St. (Zone 20). The clearing will require approximately 6 months to complete and will be conducted during normal work hours Monday through Friday, weather permitting.
The crews can be identified by highly visible safety vests and might be noticed on the slopes behind homes. The crews will be occasionally be using chain saws and line trimmers and residents may be impacted by the noise of these tools.
The completed project will tie in with existing fuel modification areas to the north and south, providing consistent community-wide wildfire protection. According to Fire Chief Mike Garcia, "With the loss of 441 structures due to wildfire in 1993, Laguna Beach has a long and tragic history of being impacted by wildland fire. By reducing the fuels adjacent to the homes, this project will help protect the citizens of South Laguna from fires threatening the City from the East. This project will also help protect the Aliso and Wood Canyons Wilderness Parks from fires that may start in the City."
Please contact Patrick Antrim, Project Operations Manager at (949) 464-6683 for additional information.