More Inspectors Sought to Help Reduce Wildfire Threat at Tahoe

More inspectors would be available to help Lake Tahoe property owners increase defensible space around homes under a plan being considered by regulators to reduce the threat of major wildland fires at the Sierra lake.

The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency's governing board on Wednesday will consider an ordinance change that would expand the number of trained professionals authorized to conduct defensible space inspections.

The proposal is the latest in a string of efforts undertaken by T-R-P-A to help streamline fire safety efforts after the 31-hundred-acre Angora wildfire in June destroyed 254 homes on the lake's south shore.

Under its current code, the bistate agency charged with protecting Tahoe's environment requires a qualified forester to mark trees for removal during defensible space inspections.

Under the proposal, those who receive training approved by T-R-P-A and fire agencies also would be allowed to mark trees for removal and conduct the inspections. They would work as fire agency designees.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

AP-NY-12-15-07 2004EST