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Fire Plan - 2010 Strategic Fire Plan for California


Fire Plan LogoYour Information Source for California’s 2010 Strategic Fire Plan

In 2010 the Board of Forestry and Fire Protection adopted the Strategic Fire Plan for California. This concluded several years of work with CAL FIRE and various stakeholders to update the 1996 Fire Plan with a new vision, goals and objectives. This website explains the new Fire Plan, how it seeks to protect lives, residential property, and natural resources.

"This collaborative effort ultimately benefits the residents of this state. It is incumbent upon state government to take constructive action on significant issues of concern that affect the property and livelihoods of Californians."
– Stan Dixon, Board of Forestry and Fire Protection Chairman

"The importance of developing a single, comprehensive strategic fire plan in concert with the Board was clear to me from the beginning. That is why I requested three seats on the steering committee to represent Fire Protection, Resource Management Programs and the Office of the State Fire Marshal. I am very pleased with the effort and accomplishments of all who participated in producing this document."
– Chief Del Walters, Director of CAL FIRE

The Basics

The California Fire Plan is the state's road map for reducing the risk of wildfire. The Fire Plan is a cooperative effort between the State Board of Forestry and Fire Protection and the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. By placing the emphasis on what needs to be done long before a fire starts, the Fire Plan looks to reduce fire fighting costs and property losses, increase firefighter safety, and to contribute to ecosystem health.


The Details

The foundation of the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan is built upon seven goals and their associated objectives. Collectively, these goals and objectives provide a framework to address the protection of lives, property and natural resources from wildland fire and improve environmental resilience to wildland fire.


FAQs

What is the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan?
Why does CAL FIRE have a 2010 Strategic Fire Plan?
Who developed the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan?
What does the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan include?
How will the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan be implemented?
What is a Unit Strategic Fire Plan?
What is a PFE?



What is the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan?
The California Strategic Fire Plan is the basis for assessing California’s complex and dynamic natural and man-made environment, and identifying a variety of actions to minimize the negative effects of wildland fire.

Vision
A natural environment that is more resilient and man-made assets which are more resistant to the occurrence and effects of wildland fire through local, state, federal and private partnerships.

Goals as Summarized
The central goals that are critical to reducing and preventing the impacts of fire revolve around both suppression efforts and fire prevention efforts. Major components are:

  • Improved availability and use of information on hazard and risk assessment
  • Land use planning: including general plans, new development, and existing developments
  • Shared vision among communities and the multiple fire protection jurisdictions, including county-based plans and community-based plans such as Community Wildfire Protection Plans (CWPP)
  • Establishing fire resistance in assets at risk, such as homes and neighborhoods
  • Shared vision among multiple fire protection jurisdictions and agencies
  • Levels of fire suppression and related services
  • Post fire recovery

Strategic Fire Plan (.pdf)

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Why does CAL FIRE have a 2010 Strategic Fire Plan?
Public Resources Code §4114 and §4130 authorize the State Board of Forestry and Fire Protection (Board) to establish a fire plan which, among other things, establishes the levels of statewide fire protection services for State Responsibility Area (SRA) lands. These levels of service recognize other fire protection resources at the federal and local level that collectively provide a regional and statewide emergency response capability. In addition, California’s integrated mutual aid fire protection system provides fire protection services through automatic and mutual aid agreements for fire incidents across all ownerships.

The mission of the Board is to lead California in developing policies and programs that serve the public interest in environmentally, economically, socially sustainable forest and rangeland management, and a fire protection system that protects and serves the people of the state. Its statutory responsibilities are to:

  1. Establish and administer forest and rangeland policy for the State of California, and
  2. Protect and represent the state’s interest in all forestry and rangeland matters, and
  3. Provide direction and guidance to CAL FIRE on fire protection and resource management, and
  4. Accomplish a comprehensive regulatory program for forestry and fire protection, and
  5. Conduct its duties to inform and respond to the people of the State of California.

In concert with the mission of the Board, the mission of CAL FIRE is to serve and safeguard the people and protect the property and resources of California.

PRC 4114 (found in Sections 4111-4123)
PRC 4130 (found in Sections 4125-4137)

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Who developed the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan?
This statewide fire plan was developed in concert between the State Board of Forestry and Fire Protection of and the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE). The Board consulted a group of outside experts to complete a needs assessment and subsequently formed the Fire Plan Steering Committee. This Committee worked for over a year preparing the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan. For the first time, the Fire Plan was released for public review and comment during development. Significant changes were made to the Fire Plan based on the valuable input from many stakeholders.

State Board of Forestry and Fire Protection
California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection

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What does the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan include?
The main components of the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan are its goals and objectives. The Plan is written so that each goal builds upon the previous one. Over time, each supporting objective will have measurement criteria to evaluate accomplishments and related effectiveness. Measurement criteria for these can be found in Appendix A of the Plan.

Goals and Objectives
The foundation of this dynamic Plan is built upon seven goals and their associated objectives. Collectively, these goals and objectives provide a framework to address the protection of lives, property, and natural resources from wildland fire and improve environmental resilience to wildland fire.

Priorities
Concurrent with the development of the Plan, the Board and the Department have identified the top priorities for each goal. During the first two years of this Plan, each CAL FIRE Unit will revise its individual Unit fire plan to identify its priorities for the implementation of the goals and objectives identified herein. Throughout the remaining life of this Plan, the priorities will be periodically reviewed and updated as necessary.

Goals
Each goal listed here is meant to build upon the previous one (e.g., Goal 3 builds upon the accomplishments in Goals 1 and 2). Although full attainment of a goal is ultimately dependent upon the success of previous goals, any of the goals can be worked on at any given time based on available funding and other opportunities.

Objectives
For each of the identified goals, this Plan lays out a number of objectives to be accomplished. The identified objectives are not meant to be all-inclusive. There may be additional objectives that the Board, CAL FIRE or other cooperative partners identify and could utilize in reaching the primary goals.

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How will the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan be implemented?
The Plan was adopted in June 2010. Shortly after the Strategic Fire Plan Analysis Work Group was formed to develop the process in which the Department will implement the Plan. This group is examining the goals and objectives of the Plan and based upon this analysis, will develop the standard procedures Units will use for implementing the Plan. A description of the processes and documentation on how to accomplish each task will be provided to Unit staff for use in creating their Unit Fire Plans. A draft of these procedures was presented to Unit Pre-Fire Engineers (PFE’s) at a workshop in November 2010. Feedback was solicited from those attending this workshop and was used to finalize the implementation procedures and documentation. Units will begin development of their Unit Fire Plans in early 2011.

Implementation of the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan for California will occur at all levels of CAL FIRE, as well as through partnerships with local, state and federal agencies, private organizations (Fire Safe Councils, home owners associations, industry, etc.) and citizens. Within CAL FIRE, some of the objectives must be handled by Sacramento and Region staff (command & control, training, etc.), while others will be implemented at the Unit level. The end result of the planning process at the Unit level will be the creation of Unit Fire Plans, which will address how the Units are achieving the goals and objectives of the Strategic Fire Plan.

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What is a Unit Strategic Fire Plan?
The largest and most visible part of CALFIRE operations is fire suppression. Operational Units are organized to address fire suppression over a geographic area, and divided by region (North or South). California has 21 Operational Units, which geographically follow county lines. Each unit consists of one to three counties.

Each Operational Unit varies greatly in size, terrain, and fire suppression strategies. For this reason, individual Unit Strategic Fire Plans are completed annually to address how each Unit is achieving the goals and objectives of the Strategic Fire Plan. Annual updates to the Unit Fire Plans will be due June 1 of each year. To simplify the process for annual updates, a Unit Fire Plan Template has been created. This template will allow for the inclusion of minor updates in addendums to the existing plan. Major changes in Unit priorities, partnerships, projects, or plan components may require a new Unit Fire Plan to be submitted.

Unit Map
Unit Fire Plans

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What is a PFE?
A PFE is a Pre-Fire Engineer. The main job of the PFE is to coordinate the creation of the Unit Fire Plan and then assist with its implementation. Under the direction and authority of the Unit Chief, they work with unit chief officers (Battalion, Division and Deputy Chiefs) and stakeholders to develop the Unit Fire Plans which are designed to achieve the goals and objectives of the 2010 Strategic Fire Plan for California. The PFE and unit staff work with many stakeholders/cooperators (federal, state and local government entities, Fire Safe Councils, individual citizens and many other organizations) to assist with the development and implementation of their Fire Plan. Each CAL FIRE Unit and Contract County has a funded position for a PFE. The PFEs in all CAL FIRE Units and most Contract Counties are Fire Captains. The program in which the PFE works varies from unit to unit and includes the following: Prevention; VMP; Resource Management; Administration; and in some cases directly for the Unit Chief.

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