CHICO, Calif. - California's peak wildfire season starts in May and ends in October, but it is now the second week of November and there has been very little rain.
So, is the fire season over?
We asked Captain John Gaddie from CAL FIRE in Butte County. He said, "No, it is not. We did not receive as much precipitation that would trigger our officials around the area to declare fire season over. So, it is still very dry and is still very susceptible to burn."
But, with rain on the way this week, will that help in shortening the fire season in our area?
Captain Gaddie said, "We look for a pattern of rain. We've had precipitation in years past that might show up in October or November and then we are dry for another four or five weeks. So, what we like to see is a pattern. Even though we are calling for precipitation this weekend, what's going to happen three or four, five, seven days after that? We want to see a pattern."
With the fire season still underway, are homeowners letting their guard down or staying prepared?
Niel Risley, a homeowner in Chico, experienced the fire in Paradise and is more prepared than in years past. He said, "What our family has done since the Paradise fire is we have organized all of our files and all of our paperwork. So, we have one box labeled red and that's our emergency box that has all our passports and everything in it so we can get out of town if we have to."
What suggestions does Captain Gaddie have for homeowners who are worried?
He said, "We are still fully staffed up and down the state. We still have our aircraft on base. We still have our firefighters that we hire for peak fire season. All of them are staffed and ready to respond throughout the state.
For a wildfire action plan and emergency supply checklist from CAL FIRE, click here.