Although summer is winding down, the threat of brush fires remains in
Fire season officially began June 7, but it’s the period between
September and November that traditionally poses the most dangerous
fire threat of the year because of Santa Ana winds, Burbank Fire
Capt. Bob Reinhardt said.
“The [weather] conditions are very dry, and when we get the hot
air and low humidity combination, there is a high chance of fire,”
Fire Marshall Dave Starr said the most frequent causes of brush
fires are a buildup of brush and debris near homes and buildings,
burning cigarettes, careless use of barbecue grills, and arson.
Barbecuers should be careful when grilling during fire season, and
shouldn’t use them at all when conditions are windy.
“When the wind is blowing like that, it dries things up,” he said.
“And it can carry embers -- small pieces of burning [wood and
charcoal] -- long distances. That can make a dangerous scenario.”
To guard against the possibility of arson, fire officials are
encouraging residents to be report suspicious people or unfamiliar
cars in their neighborhood to authorities, especially since the Brand
Park fire that torched the Verdugo Mountains hillside near the
Burbank border last September was caused by arson.
Officials, meanwhile, continue to emphasize that the approximately
17,000 residents along the Burbank hillside need to comply with the
brush clearance codes, which requires removing debris within 100 feet
of their property. The department has spent about $70,000 this year
to clear debris from property surrounding city buildings, Starr said.
“If each homeowner makes their home fire-safe, it helps themselves
as well as their neighbors,” he said.