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Fire

455 Siskiyou Boulevard
Ashland, Oregon 97520
Phone: (541) 482-2770
Fax: (541) 488-5318
Contact: Emily Matlock
Email: 
Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

Stay up to date on emergencies and important information from Ashland Fire & Rescue by signing up for our Nixle Alert System. Here's what's been happening: 
 

 


Department Information - Follow the links below or in the navigation bar to the left for more info about Ashland Fire & Rescue.

 

Go to the Chief's Page for a message from Interim Fire Chief David Shepherd.
In the event of an emergency up-to-date information will be provided for the public in one or more of the following ways depending on the situation at hand.

1700AM-Ashland's Emergency Radio Frequency
Television, Channel 5 KOBI
Radio, 93.7 FM, KTMT
Homepage of the City's Web site, www.ashland.or.us
Wildfire Information Line 541.552-2490
Roving truck with bullhorn
Volunteers on foot with hand radios

For information on emergency preparedness: Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)

Listen to Emergency Updates on 1700 AM by clicking play:

Nixle Community Alerts
SmokeWise Ashland
Fire Links
Forms & Documents

Frequently Asked Questions

Please call 541-482-2770 to see if you qualify for a burn permit. You need to be located within the City's Wildfire Hazard Zone and:

  • burning for wildfire-fuels reduction purposes, or 
  • burning State of Oregon listed noxious weeds 
If you fit either of those two categories, you can schedule a site inspection for your permit application.

Burning is only allowed between March 1st to the beginning of fire season and for two weeks after the end of fire season in the fall.

Ashland Fire & Rescue's business office is open Monday through Friday 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM except for legal holidays.  Firefighters staff both fire stations 24 hours a day, seven days a week for emergency response.

The term "Firewise" was coined in the early 1990's to identify the growing knowledge that landowners could use to reduce their wildfire risks.

A website by this name (firewise.org) is used by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) for their Firewise USA®​ program, that "teaches people how to adapt to living with wildfire and encourages neighbors to work together and take action now to prevent losses". The Firewise USA® program is co-sponsored by the USDA Forest Service, the U.S. Department of the Interior, and the National Association of State Foresters.  

Firewise USA is a national program created by NFPA that addresses the risks to homes and communities from wildfire in the Wildland/Urban Interface (Often referred to as WUI). It encourages local community-based solutions for wildfire safety, with the goal of reducing home ignitions due to wildfire. The Firewise USA program emphasizes homeowner responsibility and provides the framework for education dissemination, community partnerships, and local actions that support community wildfire safety efforts.

Ashland Fire & Rescue is a working partner with our community to help establish and advise recognized Firewise USA program sites within Ashland. Check out Ashlandfirewise.org for more information about our program!

See ashlandwatershed.org and ashlandfirewise.org for more information about any possible private-landowner grant funding. 
When planning new additions to existing buildings, decks, patios, or detached accessory structures that would increase lot coverage by 200 square feet or greater (new lot coverage), including adding an additional floor; a landscaping inspection will be required. Simply replacing an existing deck or patio with the same footprint will not require a landscaping inspection.

The fuels reduction assessment and General Fuel Modification Area ( 18.3.10.100.B )shall extend 30 feet from the furthest extent of the addition, deck or accessory structure, or to the property line, whichever is less.

The site inspection will assess and take into account the landscaping around the entire structure, not just the side for the addition is taking place. The General Fuel Modification Area required in this situation shall extend 30 feet from the furthest extent of the addition, deck or accessory structure, as mentioned above.

Modifications may not be needed, may be small, or may be extensive depending on how the current landscaping is situated in regards to fire safety.

Please Note: AMC18.3.10.100.C.3 - For construction of buildings and decks requiring a General Fuel Modification Area, the establishment of the fuel modification area provided for in subsection 18.3.10.100.B shall be completed before bringing combustible materials onto the property.

The General Fuel Modification Area extends 30 feet to help establish a primary fuel break (defensible space) around the structure, which is the 30 feet of space immediately around the home. A secondary fuel break can extend as far as 130 feet-170 feet depending on the slope of the lot. Creating and maintaining these defensible space "zones" will reduce or eliminate ignition hazards presented by vegetation (by thinning fire prone trees, creating spacing between tree canopies, removing and pruning trees, shrubs and dead vegetation).
 

As a landowner in the WHZ (Wildfire Hazard Zone), if nothing is done to change/modify the structures or the property, there is nothing that will be required of you from this ordinance. This ordinance will affect you if any of the following changes occur:

  • Increase the square footage of a home, deck or accessory structure by more than 200 square feet OR build a new structure with more than 200 square feet of new lot coverage - You will need to comply with AMC 18.3.10.100.B.
  • Build a new structure on a vacant lot that increases lot coverage more than 200 square feet.
  • If you partition or subdivide your property, you will be required to prepare and implement a Fire Prevention and Control Plan which includes fuels reduction on all parcels.
  • If you are replacing 50% or more of the roof, the roof is required be a non-wood, Class A or B fire-rated roofing material.

Here's a link to "Requirements for Constructing Structures in the Wildfire Hazard Zone.See section 18.3.10.100. For partitions of lots/subdivisions, owners will have to provide and implement a Fire Prevention and Control Plan detailing vegetation/fuels reduction, as appropriate. The link above has information regarding "Requirements for Subdivisions, Performance Standards Developments, or Partitions."

Unfortunately, there is no roof that is completely “fire proof”, however, with proper assembly of fire-rated materials, homeowners can lessen the potential for a fire starting, slow a fire’s spread and extend the amount of time it takes for a home to ignite. The roof is very vulnerable to fire because it is the largest exposed surface area of your home. The exposed roof can trap embers and easily ignite a home. In a fire vulnerable area, use class A or B roofing materials.

Material Classification

Class A (This is the least combustible roofing material and the highest resistance to fire).
Brick
Concrete
Tile
Slate
Clay
Asphalt
Metal Fiber-cement

Class B
Pressure-treated shakes and shingles
Some asphalt shingles
Some membrane roof coverings

Class C (This is the most combustible roofing material and is much more vulnerable to fire).
Membrane roof coverings
Wood shakes and shingles
Plywood
Particle board

If you are not making any changes to existing property, like creating an addition on your home or building a new structure over 200 square feet, this ordinance will not affect your landscaping. The ordinance only affects new construction over 200 square feet that is being permitted through the City's Planning and Building Departments. The vast majority of citizens won’t be affected by this, though we encourage Ashland's residents to engage in preventative mitigation on their own or through our Firewise Communities program. 

Some changes required during new construction will be that shake roofs are not allowed, and incorporating only fire-resistant plants in the first 30 feet (depending on slope it could be larger). A secondary fuel break will be created from 30 feet to 130 feet (if applicable) from all structures with spacing requirements for fire-prone vegetation.

To see a list of fire-resistant plants visit, http://www.fireadaptedashland.org

 
Though we are seeking grant funding to help landowners with wildfire mitigation costs, there are currently no funds available from Ashland Fire & Rescue to replace landscaping and wood roofing. However, there is a program through the City of Ashland Conservation department called WaterWise.

The WaterWise Landscaping website is designed to inspire the creation of landscapes that incorporate native species and other water wise plants that are not only attractive, but capable of using less water than traditional lawns. It serves as a virtual demonstration garden that showcases examples from local residents as well as provides useful information and resources on water efficient gardening concepts. The program assists with funding to remove your green-grassy area and replace it with a drought-resistant landscaping. http://www.ashlandsaveswater.org/.
(Note: There are a few plants/trees on the native species list above that are fire prone.)
 
The Wildfire Hazard Zone (WHZ) was expanded as part of the Wildfire Safety Ordinance approved on September 18th, 2018. 

See our Wildfire Safety Ordinance and Wildfire Safety pages for more information.
You can find a list of contractors and landscapers who have completed our Firewise landscaping class at: http://www.ashland.or.us/Page.asp?NavID=14121
The use of retail fireworks, sparklers, and sky lanterns are prohibited throughout the year within the City of Ashland. See Ashland Municipal Code 15.28-070(C). Ashland Fire & Rescue is asking residents to comply with the ordinance in an effort to reduce fires, injuries and the risk to our city’s natural resources. 
 
The use of any spark producing item which causes a fire is always prohibited. You can be held financially responsible for fire damage and the costs of fire suppression caused by negligent use of fireworks. 
There are three items commonly referred to as fireworks, but are considered "unclassified" items that Ashland residents may legally use:
  • Smoke bombs
  • Snakes
  • Party poppers
All local Fire Districts are listed in the white pages under "Fire Departments" and their email addresses are available via their web sites included on our links page.
Not necessarily, but it may be in your best interest.

If an addition of 200-square-feet or more in new lot-coverage is created, a fire official will perform an inspection to determine if there is adequate defensible space around the entire structure. When inspecting the landscaping, there are a few things that will be assessed:
  • Does your structure have established defensible space (a fire break), including a 30 ft buffer area that is free of fire-prone vegetation?
  • Are trees properly pruned for fire safety?
    • Are all tree limbs pruned for 10 ft clearance from chimney openings?
    • Are flammable species of trees pruned for a minimum clearance of 10 ft above and away from the roof line and exterior walls?
  • Are ladder fuels removed? Ladder fuels are vegetation that let fire transition from the ground into taller vegetation, usually trees. Ladder fuels are typically shrubs or lower tree branches.
  • Is vegetation effectively spaced?
  • Is fire-prone vegetation present?
If certain criteria are found upon inspection, removal or modification of some vegetation will likely need to be completed before construction can begin.

See our Wildfire Safety Ordinance page for further information.

There are two fire stations in Ashland.  Fire Station 1 is located at 455 Siskiyou Boulevard and Fire Station 2 is located at 1860 Ashland Street.

If you have received a letter from Ashland Fire & Rescue titled - Notice of Warning, or Notice of Violation and Order to Abate, for a property located in Ashland, it is because there is a known history of this property violating one or more aspects of Ashland Municipal Code Chapter 9.04, Weeds & Noxious vegetation. You may not have received a Notice to Abate in the past regarding this property. Violations can range in severity and kind but all play a part in increasing the risks of wildfire around a home or business and within our city and/or poses risks to the health of our watershed. 

Due to a printing error in the bulk-mailing process, the notice dated 11/30/2020 has a misprinted DUE BY date. The actual due date is June 15th2021, in preparation for next fire season. We apologize for this important printing error. 


Ashland Fire & Rescue is requesting owners and/or tenants of property in Ashland to better meet the requirements of AMC9.04 to help protect our community from wildfire. This warning letter is being issued at this time to give property owners and/or tenants extra time to prepare for next year’s fire season before legal actions may occur to bring your listed property into compliance with this ordinance.

This letter is not stating that you will be fined or your property forcibly abated, it is a warning regarding your legal responsibility that a property owner and/or tenant may be fined if the violation(s) are, or become, a significant fire risk if not properly abated. 
 
Due to the increasing risks of catastrophic wildfire in our region, Ashland Fire & Rescue is advising that greater efforts be made on your property to meet the June 15th deadline for weed abatement and to maintain minimum fire safety standards throughout fire season. Minimum fire safety standards are listed in the letter you received.

For further recommendations to improve the defensible space around your property please visit fireadaptedashland.org.
 
After reviewing the requirements set forth in the letter AND have thoroughly evaluated the referenced property and you have specific questions regarding this notice or have other pertinent questions, please email cutweeds@ashland.or.us or call 541-552-2246 and we will respond as soon as we are able. 

No. Landowners who are being incorporated into the WHZ will not see a rise in taxes because of the WHZ expansion.

CERT stands for Community Emergency Response Team. Our mission is to prepare citizens to respond effectively in disaster.

CERT trains residents to prepare their families and neighborhoods to mitigate, respond to and recover from disaster.

Our goal is to strengthen our community and make it more resilient neighborhood by neighborhood.

Our motto is "Neighbors Helping Neighbors."

See our CERT - Disaster Preparedness page for more details.

Simple! Contact the CERT office via phone or email and we will get you enrolled in our next Basic Training Course. Upon completion of Basic Training you are eligible to become a member. You may participate in CERT General meetings as a guest until you complete Basic Training.

To view the CERT web page Click Here

The typical response between Ashland's two fire stations is divided between East and West of Mountain Avenue.  Fire Station 1 responds West of Mountain Ave, and Fire Station 2 responds East of Mountain Ave.

For response information regarding your particular address please call Ashland Fire & Rescue's business office at 541-482-2770.

It was recommended that the Wildfire Hazard Zone (WHZ) be expanded to include all of the City of Ashland. Doing so enhances several elements of the fire safety strategy of the city. The Wildfire Hazard Zone was expanded on October 18th, 2018.

The City will now be able to regulate roof coverings to those appropriate for a community adjacent to and containing wildland fuels. Previously, within City limits, flammable wood product roof coverings were allowed outside of the WHZ. 

The City is also able to now regulate landscaping profiles for new construction that lend themselves to low intensity fire behavior with far less fire-spread potential. Previously, vegetation that produces severe fire behavior and fire spread, such as juniper, cypress, and arborvitae, were allowed unrestricted outside of the WHZ.

Both roof coverings and hazardous landscape fuels were a major factor in the destruction of 11 homes in the 2010 Oak Knoll fire. Properties within wildfire hazard zones are often the only ones that qualify for hazardous fuel mitigation grants. Expanding the WHZ would allow more properties the ability to apply for grant funds to help with fuels reduction and creating defensible space.

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