01 April 2009

Carbon Canyon Fire Safe Council Meeting

Tonight was the monthly meeting of the Carbon Canyon Fire Safe Council, which previously was limited to the Chino Hills/San Bernardino County/Chino Valley Fire District side of the Canyon, but now includes the Brea portion. I'd been wanting to attend council meetings, but found Tuesdays to be difficult to commit to. Now, however, the meetings have been moved to the first Wednesday of the month.

Still, I waltzed right in a half-hour late and found the 15-20 people had already gone through about half of the agenda, including a report from Claire Schlotterbeck on the status of arundo treatment in the Canyon. I'd noted previously on this blog that there was some activity in dealing with the arundo, but I only saw anything happen that one time. Hopefully, there'll be some continuation of that important work soon.

At any rate, there was quite a bit of discussion about the 30 May fire awareness fair that will be held from 10 a.m to 3 p.m. at the Chino Valley Fire District station #4 at Canon Lane and Carbon Canyon Road. There will be more forthcoming about this event as planning continues, so I'll be sure to post new information as it comes along.

There was also news of some $30,000 in grant funding to allow the Council to secure a contractor for brush hauling in those areas of the Chino Hills side that are not under HOA management. In other words, this primarily means Sleepy Hollow, Mountain View Estates (the Canon Lane area south of Carbon Canyon Road), and Western Hills Oaks (Valley Springs Drive area.) Such communities as Oak Tree Estates, Oak Tree Downs, Carriage Hills, and Summit Ranch, all being under HOAs, have their own brush removal programs. Because, however, there are portions of Brea, such as Olinda Village and Hollydale Mobile Home Estates, now part of the Council, it will be seen if there is some money available for limited brush removal for those sections or whether additional future funding can be obtained to expand the program. Incidentally, brush piles can be no larger than 10' x 10' and 6' high and contact can be made with the Council for the program. In the meantime, fire department crews have been making the rounds, reviewing brush clearance needs, and issuing notifications to property owners or residents about whether they need to clear brush or not. As was stated in yesterday's entry, much of this green we see now will be brown by summer and another potential fire hazard makes clearing brush as essential as ever.

There were other business items but those were the major ones for the period that I was there. There was, however, mention made of a bill pending in the State Senate, SB 23, that would require evacuation plans for mobile home parks, an outgrowth, I suppose, of the disastrous loss of some 500 such residences in a Sylmar park during the November fires. Hollydale in Brea isn't the only park in Carbon Canyon; there is also Western Hill Estates, a relatively small park at the end of Fairway Drive to the east of Western Hills Country Club. A Hollydale resident present at the meeting gave a vivid reminder that there are many seniors who are often unaware of the danger present during a fire and that such an evacuation plan is essntial. Some Chino Hills residents did point out that there is a service in which residents with special needs can sign up to get a personal visit from a community patrol officer in the event of an emergency, but parkwide plans are a smart idea.

What was great about the meeting was that there were residents from Sleepy Hollow, Mountain View Estates, Western Hills Oaks, Summit Ranch, Olinda Village and Hollydale, as well as fire officials from Chino/Chino Hills and Brea, and the discussion was good with plenty of useful ideas and plans offered. I sat next to the owner of Manely Friends stables who lost his home and hopes to have a rebuilt structure by Christmas. I hope to attend future meetings and keep up with what is going on with this important community association.

There is a web site link via the overall Fire Safe Council site, but with minutes from the September 2008 meeting, although the contact information for the fire inspector is there for further information.

The URL is: http://www.firesafecouncil.org/find/view_council.cfm?c=11

The next meeting of the Carbon Canyon Fire Safe Council is Wednesday, 6 May at 7:00 p.m. at the Sleepy Hollow Community Center and residents who are concerned about the threat of fire in the Canyon (and I don't know why anyone wouldn't be) should plan to be there.


Alvarajl said...

is there a location for brush removal calendar for sleepy hollow?

Paul said...

Hello Alvarajl, at last week's meeting, it was announced that grant funding was secured for brush removal. A couple of the Fire Safe Council board members were going to devise a schedule. What I would do is contact the fire department coordinator listed on the Council's web site (see the link in the blog entry) and find out when the pickup will be available. Thanks for checking this blog out!