State Debris Removal Officials Remind Owners of Properties Cleared of Debris From Woolsey and Hill Fires That More Work Is Needed before Reconstruction Can Start

Officials coordinating the removal of debris caused by the Woolsey and Hill fires today reminded property owners participating in the state’s Consolidated Debris Removal Program that the removal of debris from their properties is not the end of the process and that state contractors must complete additional work on their properties before they can begin reconstruction.

 

Debris removal officials urge participating property who are unsure where they are in the debris removal process to call the Debris Removal Operations Center (DROC) in Calabasas to obtain status information before they start reconstruction or enter the burned debris footprint.  The DROC is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.   The number for Los Angeles County property owners is 1-626-979-5370.  The number for Ventura County property owners is 1-805-504-7869.   For more information in Los Angeles County, visit lacounty.gov/LACountyRecovers or call 1-626-979-5370.  For more information in Ventura County, visit www.venturacountyrecovers.org  or call 1-805-504-7869.

Once a state crew has cleared a property of eligible debris, the surveying contractor will return to the site and collect soil samples for testing at state certified laboratory to verify that the samples taken from an owner’s property meet state environmental health and safety criteria.  So far, state laboratories have approved soil samples for 780 properties affected by the two fires.

If the soil samples meet state environmental and safety criteria, contractors then install fiber rolls and apply a virgin-based, biodegradable mulch to every cleared property whose owners have opted to have contractors implement the two types of erosion control measures.   To date, state crews have completed erosion control work on 627 of the 896 properties cleared so far and have removed more than 405,292 tons of burnt metal, ash, contaminated soil and concrete.

Following these erosion control measures, state officials and staff conduct a walkthrough of the property to ensure that all work done by state crews meets  the state’s high standard.  If work meets the state standards, debris officials submit a final inspection report to local officials, clearing the way for the property owner to begin reconstruction.  To date, state debris officials have submitted final inspection reports for 627 properties in authorities in the two counties.

Under the state program, administered by CalRecycle and the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, property owners incur no direct costs for participation.

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