2021 California Fire Response

 
Site Contact:
Rusty Harris-Bishop
Public Information Officer

(R9WildFiresPIO@epa.gov)

Site Location:
5061 Sciaroni
Grizzly Flats, CA 95636
response.epa.gov/2021CAfireresponse

EPA completed its support mission to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the State of California, and local partners in the cleanup to the fires. In August 2021, FEMA requested EPA support household hazardous waste (HHW) assessments and cleanup at residential parcels affected by the Dixie Fire in Plumas and Lassen counties. In early October, EPA completed phase 1 HHW removal operations work in El Dorado county as part of the Caldor Fire cleanup.

EPA teams worked with the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) and assessed properties with fire-damaged structures and removed HHW. HHW includes leftover household products that can catch fire, react, or explode under certain circumstances, or that are corrosive or toxic. This included products such as paints, cleaners, solvents, oils, batteries, herbicides, and pesticides. Following a fire, these products require special handling and disposal, particularly if their contents are compromised. 

EPA and DTSC's efforts reduced potential threats to the environment, and strengthened public health and safety, and allowed safe removal of solid waste, debris, and ash in the fire-affected areas during the second phase of the cleanup. EPA coordinated with cities and counties to keep communities informed about the status of the Agency's HHW collection activities.

For more information on the first phase of cleanup efforts, please visit EPA's StoryMap, a web site that includes an address lookup tool that allows viewers to type in an address and ensure that it is on the cleanup list, shows the cleanup status for parcels in each county, and presents photographs of the area. 

EPA's StoryMap link: https://www.epa.gov/2021CAfireresponse 

DTSC also has an online tool showing the progress of cleanup for all the counties where DTSC is working. That dashboard can be found here.