Living with Fire

Fire has burned in this landscape for thousands of years. Fire is not going away! We need to learn to live with it.

We need to learn to live with fire, to understand how fire works in our
landscapes, and to work with it. The Southern Humboldt Fire Safe Council (SHFSC) works with our So Hum communities, neighborhoods, road associations and government agencies to increase fire resiliency, fire preparedness, and fire safety.

Protect Your Home

Learn about defensible space, home hardening, and fire prevention. 

Safety Resources

Prepare for evacuation: Packing Lists, Sign Up for Humboldt Alert, and evacuation routes.


informations on burn piles, permits and regulations, cultural burning, prescribed fire.


Fuel Loads Are At Dangerous Levels

Many decades of fire suppression and logging have increased the fuel load of our forests to a dangerous level.

Native Americans were forbidden to conduct the burning practices that formerly helped to keep forests and grasslands in productive balance. Logging practices left fire-prone slash and vulnerable brushy new growth. Runaway growth of young trees and brush has clogged forests that would have been kept clear by frequent low intensity fires. The extreme weather events caused by climate change have made things much worse.

In the picture to the left, brushy undergrowth and low hanging limbs provide an easy route for fire to “ladder” its way into the canopy.

We Must Adapt

We must adapt our lives—our homes, our forests, our planning for emergencies—to this danger


There is a lot that we can do to make ourselves, our homes, and our forests safer!

In the picture to the right, the “ladder” fuel has been removed. A fire here is more likely to burn on the ground and not burn fiercely in the canopy.

The “ladder” fuel has been removed. A fire here is
more likely to burn on the ground and not burn fiercely in the canopy.

What You Can Do

  • Defensible Space

    Protect your home by creating defensible space around it

  • Home Hardening

    Protect your home through home hardening--working to make it more
    resistant to catching on fire.

  • Landscape

    Learn more about the role of fire in the landscape and how we can use it for
    our benefit and the benefit of the forest.

  • Community

    Protect Your Community--get involved with the Fire Safe Council and local
    neighborhood groups.