In November 2017 a group of neighbors started working to create the first Firewise group in Santa Cruz.

With the help of Fire Chief Jason Hajduk, one active group formed on the East Side of Santa Cruz, and two new ones are forming on the West Side. We have been meeting with our neighbors regularly to learn about wildfire preparedness and have conducted public meetings, yard cleanup events, and home risk assessments.

fireman copy.jpg

Recent Events:

May 4, 2019 was national Wildfire Community Preparedness Day. To join in the effort, Santa Cruz Firewise conducted projects in several Santa Cruz neighborhoods to reduce wildfire risk, including yard clean-ups, gutter clearing, creating defensible space around homes, and spreading of wood chips as mulch.

In support of this day, Mayor Martine Watkins issued a proclamationMay 4 Mayor's Proclamation.jpeg

declaring May 4, 2019 Wildfire Community Preparedness day to “encourage all residents to recognize the importance of wildfire prevention efforts and work together to enhance our resilience and readiness.” We thank the Mayor for the proclamation and the City’s support.

April 1, 2019: Fire Battalion Chief Robert Young and Urban Forester Leslie Keedy conducted a demonstration walkthrough around two Prospect Heights homes to assess fire risk and teach us how to create defensible space around our homes. See Defensible Space for details and advice for everyone on how to do this

Things you can do to protect your home: The FireWise homepage has detailed information on what areas and actions you should focus on around your home to reduce wildfire risk and losses.   For additional information on projects you and your neighbors can easily accomplish visit

Evacuation maps for Santa Cruz

Here is a link to Code RED to register yourself with our 911 center for emergency notifications. Please take the time to register so that timely notifications can be sent to you.

For more information about Firewise Santa Cruz, and how to start a group in your neighborhood, contact

The National Fire Protection Association’s “Firewise USA®” program ( teaches communities how adapt to living with wildfire by encouraging neighbors to work together and take action to protect their homes. It provides information and resources to help neighborhoods understand wildfire risk and engage in risk reduction efforts.