(PRC 4291) Public Resources Code

Effective January 1, 2005, if you live in a wildland area
in California you need to know about changes
in the following laws.

Governor Schwarzenegger signed into law on
September 23, 2004, Senate Bill 1369.

This bill amended both Public Resources Code
(PRC) 4291 and Government Code (GC) 51182
in the following manner:


  • Increased the minimum clearance (defensible space) requirement from 30' to 100'.
  • Why 100 feet?  Because it is your responsibility.   Click here for more information.
  • Provide for state law, or local ordinance, rule or regulation to specify requirements of greater than 100'.
  • Allows insurance companies to require home/building owners to maintain firebreaks greater than 100'.
  • Board of Foresty and Fire Protection Proposed Rule Packages.  Click here.
CAL FIRE San Mateo-Santa Cruz Unit Strategic Fire Plan
PRC 4291
GC 51182
Burn Pile Guidelines
Hazard  Abatement Contractors List Fire Safe Landscaping
Wildland Hazard and Building Codes Fireworks Safety
USFA Smoke Alarm Info
USFA Smoke Alarm Flyer

Click here for more information regarding defensible space around your home in:
Living with Fire in Santa Cruz County.

Contact your closest fire station
for more information.


Living with Fire, San Mateo County Version

Living with Fire



Fire Prevention education is key to all fire prevention efforts.

Each year thousands of children as well as adults receive individual and group training/information on fire safety and prevention topics.

The Volunteers In Prevention are an important component in spreading the word about fire safety. Volunteers assist staff in program presentations at schools, fairs, parades and local events. You can become a VIP whether you're a senior or a teenager.


If you are interested in becoming a
"Volunteer in Prevention"
you can contact:

Fire Captain Jake Dellamonica at:
(831) 335-6721

public ed


Kids, you can click to learn more about Smokey or Sparky!

smokey               sparky     



The primary emphasis of the San Mateo/Santa Cruz Unit’s Prevention Bureau/Law Enforcement Officers is to enforce local and state fire laws as they apply to the missions of CAL FIRE, State Fire Marshal and the San Mateo & Santa Cruz County Fire Departments.

Arson and negligently caused fires receive priority for law enforcement action, which typically results in criminal or civil proceedings against the responsible person(s). Such proceedings lead to fines, fire suppression cost collection, probation, jail/prison terms. Law enforcement action is a critical fire prevention tool.

Peace officers from the San Mateo/Santa Cruz Unit are routinely called upon to conduct serial arson investigations, perform security functions for special operations and emergency incidents, conduct fireworks , and fire extinguisher investigations, as well as disposal of explosives. Our Investigators also  assist fire and law enforcement agencies with incident investigations. These peace officers are subject to call statewide.

Due to the complexities of the emergency incidents, the unit’s law enforcement component maintains close working relationships with the district attorney’s office, law enforcement agencies of all venues, and working task groups such as gang, juvenile and narcotics task forces. Additionally the unit’s peace officers can be called upon to perform general law enforcement duties statewide during times of disaster and major emergencies

To enforce state fire and forest laws, Cal Fire Law Enforcement officers are trained and certified in accordance with the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST). The Department's 300 plus officers are busy year round investigating fire causes, interviewing witnesses, issuing citations and setting up surveillance operations. The Office of the State Fire Marshal Arson and Bomb Specialists provide fire and bomb investigation services to state-owned facilities, and provide assistance to local government fire and law agencies. The Department's investigators have a very successful conviction rate.

The CAL FIRE Arson Hotline is maintained by the Department's Sacramento Law Enforcement section, which also processes requests for payment of arson rewards. Rewards of up to $10,000 are available for information regarding wildland fires within State jurisdiction. Depending on the magnitude of the fire, enhanced rewards of up to $25,000 or higher may be available.



911 arson