June 2024

The Office of the State Fire Marshal (OSFM) is the CAL FIRE program that protects life and property through the development and application of fire prevention, engineering, training and education, and enforcement. The team at CAL FIRE - OSFM are dedicated professionals committed to serving and safeguarding the people, property, and resources of California.

Welcome to the June edition of the CAL FIRE - Office of the State Fire Marshal (OSFM) Newsletter. 2024 has already proven to be a busy year for the CAL FIRE – OSFM. This month’s edition of our newsletter is packed full of useful information and updates from around our programs.

Click Here to Read the State Fire Marshal’s Full Message

How CAL FIRE is Keeping You Safe this 4th Of July

As we gather to celebrate the Fourth of July, ensure your festivities are enjoyable and safe. Recently, CAL FIRE's Arson and Bomb Unit (ABU) partnered with the Firefighters Burn Institute for a webinar to discuss various topics related to safe and sane fireworks. Since July 2023, ABU Investigators have been busy assisting with numerous illegal fireworks enforcement operations and as a result, along with our local fire and law enforcement partners, have successfully seized over 122,000 pounds of illegal fireworks from all over California. The ABU continue to inspect firework retails across the state to ensure every item has the Fire Marshal seal.

Check your local laws and ordinances to determine if fireworks are illegal where you live, or if certain “Safe and Sane” fireworks are permitted. Prevent fires and injuries caused by fireworks this Fourth of July! 

Arson and Bomb Unit
More on Fireworks Safety

Record 800th Firewise Community Awarded in Ventura County

The Firewise USA® program, led by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), offers a structured approach for communities to enhance their wildfire resilience in California. This initiative promotes collaborative efforts among residents, local fire departments, and other key stakeholders to bolster the fire resistance of homes and surroundings. Integral to California’s wildfire preparedness strategy, the program is supported by CAL FIRE’s Community Wildfire Preparedness & Mitigation Division, aiding communities in achieving Firewise designation.

Learn More About Firewise Communities
Click to View Photos from the Event

Protect Your Home: CAL FIRE & Insurance Institute of Business and Home Safety Highlights Defensible Space Through Live Burn Demonstration  

CAL FIRE- Office of State Fire Marshal and the Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) hosted a live burn demonstration, showcasing the importance of creating a Zone 0 defensible space around homes. The educational event highlighted research-based evidence of how a proper five-feet of Zone 0 defensible space can help protect homes from wildfires. The demonstration serves as valuable reminder for homeowners to take proactive steps to protect their homes.

Photos of the Demonstration
IBHS Live Burn Summary

Homes in Kelseyville Being Retrofitted Against Wildfire Under California Wildfire Mitigation Program

In a first of its kind effort to protect California’s most vulnerable communities, homes are being retrofitted to be ‘hardened’ with ember resistant materials and defensible space efforts to increase community resilience during a wildfire. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) and the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) joined forces to establish the California Wildfire Mitigation Program to lead this pilot initiative.

Photos of the Retrofitted Home
Community Wildfire Mitigation Program

How the Creation of Defensible Space Has Changed Over the Last 60 Years

Sixty years ago, when it came to protecting your home from wildfires, it was all about that one thirty-foot zone, but now we have three zones that stretch up to 100-feet from your property. Defensible space is the buffer zone you create between your property and the surrounding wildland area. This space is key to slowing or stopping wildfire spread and protecting your home from embers, flames, or heat. It also gives firefighters a safer area to defend your property. In each of the three zones, the intensity of vegetation management increases as you get closer to your home. The goal is to start at your house and work outward, reaching up to 100 feet or your property line.  

Don’t leave your defensible space stuck in the 60s.

How to Create Defensible Space

CAL FIRE’s Quick Guide to Lithium-Ion Battery Safety

From e-bikes, scooters, power tools, and laptops, lithium-ion batteries keep us connected. But with great power comes great responsibility. Here’s a guide on how to safely use products powered by the battery.

Learn More About Energy Storage Systems
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