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Draft report offers Thomas Fire retrospective

The Montecito Fire District gave residents a chance to hear about an initial Thomas Fire Retrospective Report.

The reports is called “A Retrospective Study of Montecito Fire Protection District’s Wildland Fire Program during the 2017 Thomas Fire.”

Consultant Crystal Kolden spoke to the crowd. The former firefighter turned fire scientist said the community partnership with the fire district made a difference that was perhaps overshadowed by the debris flow.

The University of Idaho professor said, “The Thomas Fire did set a lot of records and it was incredibly unusual because it burned in December, it was so dry.”

She said Montecito found a system that works.

“This is a community partnership between the residents and the fire district and it involves everyone doing their part to help reduce the fire impact through preparedness, structure hardening and making your own land defensible and then working with community and fire district to come in and do fuel reduction work, so it involves the whole community,” said Kolden.

The debris flow was a rare occurance.

“The debris flow is not something people here could control,” Kolden added.

The Montecito Fire District is hosting another discussion about fire and climate on Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018 at 5:30 p.m.

Find a link to the draft report below.

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