It’s safe to say many of us have been preoccupied since the COVID-19 pandemic came to Marin County, but the time has come for all of us to begin thinking about the approaching fire season, and the strong possibility of Public Safety Power Shutoffs (PSPS). The best thing you can do to be prepared for wildfire or the loss of power for several days is to get ready now. We may only have a day or two to prepare for a PSPS. In wildfire conditions, you and your family may only have minutes to evacuate. There are things you can do to prepare, and now is the time to take action.
Preparing for Wildfire
Practice good vegetation management. Use non-flammable plants when landscaping and eliminate flammable plants from your yard. Space vegetation to create fuel breaks and keep your yard watered. Dispose of your cuttings at the next Chipper Day on Saturday, August 8 (9 AM - 4 PM).
Create defensible space around your home. Keep brush cleared 30-100 feet from your home.
Keep rain gutters clear of leaves, pine needles, and other debris during fire season. A flying ember can easily ignite these materials.
Test your smoke detectors. Smoke detectors save lives. If your smoke detectors require batteries, change them twice a year.
Prepare for evacuation. Think now about what you would take with you if you only had minutes to evacuate your home. Prepare an evacuation list so you know which necessary or irreplaceable items to take with you, or keep a "go bag" near the door. Utilize this handy preparedness checklist and reference sheet and keep in an easily accessible location.
More useful tips on preparing for evacuation and emergency are in the Get Ready 94920 manual.
Back up important documents. Make copies of important papers or records and store in an alternate location in case your home is lost.
For more information on preparing for fire, visit:
Preparing for Public Safety Power Shutoffs (PSPS)
Stock up on supplies before a PSPS is announced, such as lanterns, flashlights, and headlamps with fresh batteries. Purchase and charge backup power cells and/or solar chargers to charge your devices during an outage. Electric and battery backup power comes in many shapes and sizes; shop around to find what’s best for you.
Think about generators now. If you need a large capacity power source, such as to provide backup power for a medical device or refrigerator, there are large capacity electric or battery operated ’generators’ available. Permanent generator installation may require additional permitting. Contact the Planning Division at (415)435-7390 for more information.
Keep safety in mind. Gas-powered generators can be very dangerous and improper use can result in carbon monoxide poisoning or death. If you choose to use a gas-powered generator, do not use it indoors or near vegetation, an open window, or ventilation. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and warning labels. If using your car to charge devices, open your garage door or keep your vehicle outside while it is running.
Sign up for alerts to receive notification about power shutoffs and available resources. Information about when a PSPS will occur, and for how long, will be available through various notification systems:
Sign up for the Tiburon Talk newsletter. The Town will release information about PSPS through the Tiburon Talk newsletter, in addition to information about other local resources available. The Town intends to open a resource center or charging station during a PSPS, but space may be limited due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please prepare yourself as best you can with alternate power and charging methods.