Reno Fire giving away free rakes, offering vegetation disposal

The Reno Fire Department is encouraging communities to clear away vegetation and create...
The Reno Fire Department is encouraging communities to clear away vegetation and create defensible space to reduce wildfire risk.(KOLO)
Published: Mar. 19, 2021 at 12:33 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - The first day of spring is Saturday, March 20, and the Reno Fire Department is giving you a hand as you start that spring cleaning.

The department is providing dumpsters to throw away any vegetation around your home that could pose a fire risk.

The dumpsters can be found at the following Reno Fire Stations:

Saturday, March 20, 2021: Fire Station 3, 580 W. Moana Ln., from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. or until the dumpsters are full.

Sunday, March 28, 2021: Fire Station 11, 7105 Mae Anne Dr., from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. or until the dumpsters are full.

The Reno Fire Department is also giving away 120 free rakes this Saturday, March 20 at Fire Station 3. The rakes will be available on a first-come, first-served basis and limited to one rake per person. You don’t have to be a participant in the dumpster program, but the intent is for residents to clean their yard or assist a neighbor in yard clean-up as part of their Spring cleaning plans.

The goal of the Reno Home Wildland Fuels Reduction Program is to help communities create defensible space to reduce the threat and effects of a wildland fire.

Starting every weekend from April 2 through September 26, the City of Reno will deliver dumpsters to requesting neighborhoods for the purpose of creating defensible space. If you are in a Reno community that borders the wildland urban interface, you may qualify for a neighborhood dumpster to haul away dead vegetation and overgrowth. If available you can reserve a dumpster at no cost.

The 30-yard dumpsters are delivered every Thursday and picked up every Monday.

The program dumpsters are only for disposal of “vegetative waste” or “yard debris/refuse” - plants that grow on the property. Furniture, appliances, construction materials, hazardous materials and chemicals are not allowed in the dumpsters.

To check for dumpster availability, call RFD’s main office at 775-334-2300 or submit your application online. Priority will be given to neighborhoods that border the Wildland Urban Interface.

Reno Fire provided the following tips for creating defensible space:

The fire safety goal of landscaping and maintenance is very simple: Reduce the amount of fuel immediately surrounding your home. This does not mean your property has to be barren. Some plants are more fire resistive than others. One of the most important things a homeowner can do is to create a safety zone or fire break around the house using space and fire resistive planting.

You can reduce your chances of being a wildfire fire victim by doing the following:

0 feet to 5 feet from your home:

  • The Immediate Zone is closest to your house and the most vulnerable.
  • Remove any combustible outdoor furniture. Replace jute or fiber door mats with fire resistant materials.
  • Remove or relocate all combustible materials, including garbage and recycling containers, lumber and trash
  • Clean all fallen leaves and needles regularly. Repeat often during fire season.
  • Remove tree limbs that extend into this zone. We recommended no combustible vegetation within five feet of structures.
  • Do not store firewood, lumber or combustibles under decks or overhangs.
  • Use only inorganic, non-combustible mulches such as stone or gravel.

5 feet to 30 feet from your home:

  • The Intermediate Zone may include buildings, structures, decks, etc.
  • Keep this area “Lean, Clean, and Green.”
  • Remove dead plants, dead grass, dry leaves and pine needles from your yard, roof and rain gutters.
  • Trim trees regularly to keep branches a minimum of 10 feet from other trees.
  • Remove branches that hang over your roof, and keep dead branches 10 feet away from your chimney.
  • Relocate piles of wood or debris 30 feet from any structures.
  • Remove vegetation and items that could catch fire from around and under decks.

30 feet to 100 feet from your home:

  • The Extended Zone may even include space more than 100 feet if you live on a steep south-facing slope.
  • Cut or mow annual grass down to a maximum height of four inches.
  • Try not to allow fallen needles and leaves to exceed a depth of three inches.

For more information, contact RFD’s Division of Fire Prevention at 775-334-2300.

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