Are Green-and-Fire-Fuel-Lean Efforts Coming Our Way?

“Fire-ey Questions …from Your Neighbors” article in the May/June 2024 edition of the MetroView.

By Judy Beust Harrington, Co-Chair, Kensington Fire Safe (KFS)

Kensington’s fire safe council will share researched answers to inquiries from community members here – if you send your fire-related questions to  Pictures appreciated! 

Here’s a follow-up to previous Firey Questions:

Q #1.  When is the city going to trim our canyons?

Come pose that question to Deputy Chief Marshal Anthon Tosca, Senior Code Compliance Supervisor Marci Garcia plus other representatives from the Parks and Recreation Open Space Division, and also from the Fire Rescue Department, when they join us for a presentation at Kensington Community Church, Wednesday, June 12th at 6:30 PM, in Lander Hall. 

Learn about vegetation thinning on certain city property adjacent to privately-owned lots, the “Ember Resistant Zone,” real estate defensible space inspections and other local wildfire prevention efforts.  Please let us know if you’re coming so we can be sure to have enough chairs.  RSVP at

Q #2.  Can I find out how fire safe my house really is?

A: Yes!  Check out the FREE home assessment program being offered by the Fire Safe Council of San Diego County.   The assessments include inspecting your house and property to determine vulnerabilities to potential flying embers in the event of a wildfire, as well as other fire dangers.  Staff conducting the 30-to-45-minute, confidential assessment will make recommendations for improvements to harden your home against potential fires and provide other resources.

Two program phases are being rolled out by geographic zones.   The first phase is the home assessments.  For Kensington/Zone 6 the second round will take place August 5th to the 7th.  They already completed about half a dozen in our area during the first March round.

There’s a second “service” phase when chipping and defensible space efforts are available to homeowners in high-risk areas that have physical, economic, or other barriers to doing the work themselves.    These services will be available August 12th to 16th  for our area.  For more details, go to

This program is made possible by funding from CAL FIRE, through the California Fire Safe Council’s Defensible Space Assistance Grant Program.

Q#3: When is the next KFS Dumpathon?

A:  Well, not this Spring as originally planned. We’ve been told that we should not hold this fuel-thinning support during the March through August gnatcatcher breeding season. We started holding late Spring events several years ago, based on resident’s feedback on the best time for trimming excess brush, after learning of a County and State agreement to allow fire fuel reduction efforts during this season.  However, we were recently informed that the City’s Municipal Code restricting this activity overrides this agreement.  So, our Spring Dumpathon was canceled.

Brush management crews at work