FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 7, 2023
Lyz Bantilan, Public Information Officer, Santa Barbara County APCD, (805) 979-8283
Scott Safechuck, Public Information Officer, Santa Barbara County Fire, (805) 896-6336
Heather Constable, Director, UCSB Sedgwick Reserve, (805) 951-0022
Prescribed Training Burn to Occur in November
SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. — The Santa Barbara County Fire Department is informing the public of a prescribed burn that will occur in November. Prescribed fires typically burn less intensely than wildfires. Prescribed burns can help prevent the spread of wildfires and can reduce impacts to watersheds that can result in soil loss and sedimentation.
The upcoming prescribed burn is facilitated by TREX (Prescribed Fire Training Exchanges). TREX exercises bring firefighting partners together to expand their experience with prescribed burns and are facilitated independently of the Santa Barbara County Fire Department. The Santa Barbara County Fire Department will participate by providing fire contingency resources to ensure the fire is contained to the property of origin. TREX exercises allow firefighting partners to engage in hands-on prescribed fire training, protect infrastructure and neighboring residential areas, conduct research on biodiversity and outcomes of prescribed burning under different fire return intervals.
In partnership with the UCSB Cooperative Extension, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) California, and TNC North America, this burn will occur on the UCSB Sedgwick Reserve in the Santa Ynez Valley, northeast of Los Olivos. Approximately 54 acres will be burned over 3 days. A mixture of grasses and oak woodland will be burned.
Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District (APCD) staff review the Smoke Management Plans and provide conditions to minimize smoke impacts in Santa Barbara County. The burns will occur when the meteorological conditions are highly favorable to direct smoke away from population centers. Once the burn day has been selected, a media advisory will be issued.
TREX event prescribed burns are conducted independent of the Santa Barbara County Fire Department. These events and are planned and implemented by private burn bosses in coordination Santa Barbara County Fire Department, Santa Barbara County APCD, San Luis Obispo County APCD, San Joaquin Valley APCD, Ventura County APCD, and the California Air Resources Board to minimize impacts on air quality on surrounding communities. The burn is dependent on weather and air quality conditions that are favorable to smoke dispersion. If the conditions are not as desired, the burn will be rescheduled or cancelled.
Due to changing winds and weather conditions, it is difficult to predict which areas of the county, if any, may be most affected by smoke from the burn. If you smell smoke, take precautions and use common sense to reduce any harmful health effects by limiting outdoor activities. When you can smell smoke or when it is visible in your area, avoid strenuous outdoor activity and remain indoors as much as possible. These precautions are especially important to children, older adults, and those with heart and lung conditions. Use caution when driving near prescribed burns due to reduced visibility.
For more information regarding the County’s air quality, visit www.OurAir.org.
To view a statewide prescribed burn map and other features, visit the Prescribed Fire Information Reporting System (PFIRS) website: https://ssl.arb.ca.gov/pfirs/firm/firm.php