Tuesday, July 22, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Cut those weeds, and keep them cut

faison column sig

By
From page A8 | June 08, 2014 |

I’ve written here previously about overgrown weeds at various gateway-type properties within the city, both for the unsightly appearance at these key locations and also because of the fire danger such overgrown dry grasses and weeds present.

Drought conditions this year make it imperative that we all do our part to minimize the potential for wildfires within the city.

Fairfield firefighters and their counterparts in other communities and in the county are engaged in specialized training in large part due to what’s expected to be an active fire season. They are also working to ensure that vacant property within the city is clear of potential wildfire fuel.

Firefighters seek our help to blunt what’s expected to be a dangerous fire season. The danger: Dry grass and brush across the region – material that’s prime fuel for grass fires.

Fairfield residents are used to the seasonal greening and browning of the grasses and brush in the surrounding foothills. The same is true of vacant lots in town – and landscaping that surrounds homes and businesses.

The city has guidelines for clearing dry grasses and brush within the city limits, guidelines that could cost you some cash if you don’t comply and the city has to take care of the situation for you. Failure to comply can also cost you your home or business should the tall, dry grass and brush ignite.

Fairfield’s rules cover property owned or maintained by the city and any undeveloped or developed private property within the city. These rules cover how properties are to be maintained during fire season to limit the potential for a wildfire that could threaten people or property. For example, dry grasses and weeds must be cut to a height of 4 inches or less — and maintained at that height for the duration of fire season, which typically begins in May and ends in October.

This year’s drought extended that time frame across vast swaths of the state.

The regulations also outline the process used by the city to remove dry brush, weeds and grasses should private property owners fail to do so. Equally important, the rules outline how the city will collect its costs for doing so, from the property owners.

It’s no secret we’re in the midst of a drought. The relief we saw with some early spring rainfall, while blunting the effects of the regional drought to some degree, actually set things in motion for a bad fire season. That’s because grasses that had essentially withered due to lack of rainfall got a new burst of life – and growth – before finally dying off for the season.

Fairfield Battalion Chief Bob Stoffel said this week that the area’s dry grasses are taller and drier than last year, a year that saw the city’s largest fire in modern times.

We all remember the Aug. 27, 2013, Marigold Fire, a wind-whipped monster that destroyed or damaged several homes, prompted what was arguably the largest regional response in the city’s history, and made national news. That fire was fueled in large part by tall grasses located behind the homes along Marigold Drive. We are fortunate that the fire didn’t spread farther than it did, and that no one was killed in the inferno.

So as firefighters get the word out about the importance of maintaining vacant property to protect against wildfires, and as fire officials across the state talk of “defensible space” – a clear barrier of 30 to 100 feet around your home – I add my call to the chorus: If you are responsible for some property, make sure that grasses, weeds and shrubs are kept in check. This includes grasses and weeds near homes.

You can also help firefighters by letting them know about any properties that pose a fire hazard. You can do so by calling 428-7065 or sending an email to weedabatement@fairfield.ca.gov.

If you want more information about how to prepare yourself, your family and your home for a possible wildfire, visit www.readyforwildfire.org. The site offers tips for people to make their homes more resistant to wildfires and to ensure that families are ready to evacuate early and safely when a wildfire strikes.

I don’t want to see another Marigold-type of fire this season in Fairfield. I suspect you don’t, either. So let’s all pull together and make this the safest fire season possible within the city.

Reach Glen Faison at 427-6925 or gfaison@dailyrepublic.net. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/GlenFaison.

Glen Faison

Glen Faison

Glen Faison joined the Daily Republic as managing editor in September 2009. He has worked as a reporter and editor for daily and weekly newspapers in the San Joaquin Valley for 20-plus years. His experience includes time as editor of the Golden Eagle, a military paper serving the Lemoore Naval Air Station. He graduated from Fresno State University with a bachelor's degree in journalism and bleeds Bulldogs red. He is an avid Washington Redskins fan, and attended the 1988 NFC Championship Game against the Minnesota Vikings at RFK Stadium. He married his wife, Jill, in 2005, and has three children: Courtni, Tyler and Hayli.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 7 comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • MikeJune 08, 2014 - 7:11 am

    As I recall, the Marigold fire was started and fueled by property owned and not maintained by either CalTrans or the County, definitely not the homeowner. I agree residents should do all they can to lessen fuel for fire around their homes but also their neighbors, fire does not respect property lines. Alleviate/Report potential fuel sources.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • rlw895June 08, 2014 - 7:42 am

    Don't wait for the City. Be a vigilante.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • DR_ReaderJune 08, 2014 - 8:22 am

    The city needs to do their part and ensure their property is compliant as well, for example... look at the vacant land on North Texas Street located by Les Swab that is owned by the city. The weeds are quite tall and have not been cut down for some time now.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • FairfieldJune 08, 2014 - 8:42 am

    how about the neighborhoods not only the front but I have seen some backyards with knee high weeds.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • MikeJune 08, 2014 - 9:17 am

    How does the bike path look? That runs for a good distance through Fairfiled with many homes abutted to it, the chance of a wind blown firestorm would be disastorous. Look around folks, it's our city.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • PornacJune 08, 2014 - 9:15 am

    One person's weed is another's pretty plant.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • 2realJune 08, 2014 - 10:51 am

    And remember , be careful around the redwood trees ;)

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

Weather for Tuesday, July 22, 2014

By Daily Republic staff | From Page:

 
Library friends set spring book sale

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A5

 
 
Carpenters training center set to expand in Fairfield

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A3, 2 Comments | Gallery

Man, woman, comic and dance contest primed for box office

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A7

 
Polk first to file for Fairfield council

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A5

Rockville Trails hike on August calendar

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A5

 
Groups plan Zombie Run to raise college scholarship cash

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A5

Governor signs 2 bills by Frazier into law

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A5

 
Video chair exercise class returns to senior center

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A5

2 Vacaville homes hit by gunfire

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
.

US / World

Detroit retirees vote in favor of pension cuts

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Clinton: US, Europe should get tough on Russia

By The Associated Press | From Page: , 2 Comments

Gaza death toll rises as truce effort intensifies

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Israeli aircraft hit more than 70 targets in Gaza

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Rebels release train with bodies from downed jet

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Genetic mapping triggers new hope on schizophrenia

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Afghan vet who fought wounded gets Medal of Honor

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

 
Hopkins pays $190M in pelvis exam pix settlement

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Ex-teacher convicted of pushing wife off cliff

By The Associated Press | From Page: , 1 Comment

 
Full-contact youth football practices restricted

By The Associated Press | From Page:

BART police enforce stretching ban at stations

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
 
Report: Retaliation by supervisors common at VA

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Law blocks some brown lawn fees during droughts

By The Associated Press | From Page: , 1 Comment

 
California won’t send troops to Mexican border

By The Associated Press | From Page: , 1 Comment

Murder charges filed in California bank robbery

By The Associated Press | From Page: , 1 Comment

 
Cause of deaths in FedEx truck-bus crash released

By The Associated Press | From Page:

California reduces deportations for minor crimes

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Official: State can send inmates to medical site

By The Associated Press | From Page:

.

Opinion

 
Walmart donation benefits Meals on Wheels

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11

Batson’s column on Mideast peace is wrong

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11, 1 Comment

 
.

Living

Community Calendar: July 22, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page:

 
.

Entertainment

Love and Manson guest on ‘Sons of Anarchy’

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
‘Fargo’ gets 2nd season on FX with new cast, crime

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Box office top 20: ‘Apes’ holds reign with $36.3M

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
TVGrid July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

.

Sports

Hugo Perez Elite Training Camp to be held in Vallejo

By Daily Republic staff | From Page:

 
Duvall, Kontos help Giants beat Phillies

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

 
Lady Vols coach wants a stronger finishing touch

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Gail Goestenkors quits WNBA job, enters hoops hall

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Chamberlain’s arm and beard fitting in with Tigers

By The Associated Press | From Page:

This date in sports history for Tuesday, July 22, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Big 12 commish’s dire warning about pending change

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Big Papi passes Yaz with 453rd career home run

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Chargers bolt into camp with high hopes

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Broncos primed for another super run

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Seattle says what happened last season is history

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Tony Stewart riding high from sprint car victory

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Head of 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics resigns

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
6 South Americans refuse to return to Donetsk club

By The Associated Press | From Page:

BMC, Team-Garmin Sharp back for USA Pro Challenge

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Tour leader Nibali: A ‘flag-bearer’ against doping

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Witness: Sterling needs Clippers sale to pay debts

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Jeter turns small part of attention to business

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Raiders enter camp with ‘chip’ on shoulders

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

49ers start fresh after forgettable offseason

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

 
Cain heads to DL with elbow injury

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
.

Business

Microsoft makes design central to its future

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Allergan to cut 1,500 employees in restructuring

By The Associated Press | From Page:

.

Obituaries

Shirley T. ‘Mac’ McFadden

By Nancy Green | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
.

Comics

Zits july 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Garfield July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Sally Forth July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Get Fuzzy July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Bridge July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Blondie July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Cryptoquote July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Beetle Bailey July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Wizard of Id July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Baby Blues July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

B.C. July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Crossword July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Baldo July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Pickles July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

For Better or Worse July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Peanuts July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Sudoku July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Dilbert July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Frank and Ernest July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Rose is Rose July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Word Sleuth July 22

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5