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Deadline nears for residential weed abatement

Hannah Hanford

Village News Intern

Fallbrook Village News met with North County Fire Protection District (NCFPD) Communications Specialist Dani Vargas and Fire Prevention Specialist Lars Beeghley to discuss upcoming deadlines for weed abatement in the greater Fallbrook area. Ordinance deadlines for cutting back trees and weeds are coming up. Also, Chipping Day, sponsored by the Fallbrook FireSafe Council, is being held June 3 at no cost to residents.

Chipping Day is Saturday, June 3 from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the corner of Alturas and Aviation roads behind Albertson's. Chipping Day is primarily for homeowners and not landscapers. "NCFPD does not want landscapers, but rather homeowners. So many people have a huge issue. They are willing to do the work, but trying to dispose of the trimmings can be quite costly. So this is one way we can help try to alleviate some of that cost," says Beeghley.

Vargas said, "The requirements are no branch trimmings larger than 6 inches; must be free of dirt and rocks; no construction materials; no grass or stumps, or poison oak. And they do ask to not have any commercial landscapers. This is supposed to be a program for residents of Fallbrook and surrounding areas to be able to bring all of their vegetative material to be chipped."

For individuals looking to get more information on weed abatement, there are resources on the North County Fire website ( For seniors who need help with weed abatement, they can reach out to the Fire Safe Council.

For weed abatement concerns, there is a form individuals can fill out on the website. When clicking on the form, it states that you can submit a concern about a property in Fallbrook, Bonsall or Rainbow. After you complete the form, a fire prevention specialist will be out to inspect the property in question.

If the property is deemed to be a fire hazard, he or she will issue a notice to correct the hazard. Please allow for 60-90 days for any visible progress, as occasionally, property owners are unresponsive.

Ultimately, if the property owner is unresponsive, the property will be abated by the district [and the owner charged].

Also, it is stated on North County Fire's website that, "When filling out the weed abatement concern form, you must pinpoint on the map where the hazard is so that we can locate the appropriate address."

When it comes to having a defensible space, visit the Cal Fire website, for more information.

Beeghley addressed the AB38 Defensible Space Inspection "that is particularly for homeowners that are looking to sell their homes."

Beeghley said, "For about a year and a half, residents have been required to have a defensible space inspection if they fall into the high and very high severity zones for the state of California, and that can be found on Cal Fire's website. They can quickly find out if they are going to have to have that [inspection], but most real estate agents know about it and I will go out there."

Beeghley said once they put in a request, he will go out and do a regular defensible space inspection and either pass the property or not. He said if he fails the property, he will typically communicate with photos what needs to be done and give them a chance to take care of it before he officially fails the property. "But as of June 1st or possibly the 15th of June, I'll write a notice for the property."

Vargas added," Lars is really good about working with residents, he is very understanding. If a resident receives a notice call, communicate with us and Lars will definitely help them get through that notice so that we don't have to get to that forced abatement point."


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