Defensible Space Evaluation
FIRE MARSHAL REPORT
Tray Palmer, Fire Marshal from the Reno Fire Department, issued a memorandum to Skyline View Association dated October 18, 2019. A copy may be found below. This was in response to our request for an evaluation of Association property and provide recommendations and guidance regarding fire mitigation.
The memo states the Reno Municipal Code (RMC 8.22.060 Property and Premises Maintenance) requires that dead and dying vegetation be removed within 30 feet of property lines. Mr. Palmer states – “defensible space beyond 30 feet is not required by Code, however, based on fuel load and topography, defensible space beyond that 30 feet along portions of your open space property is highly recommended.”
Mr. Palmer cites the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension on how to properly create defensible space in five steps — Know Your Distance; Remove the Dead; Create Separation; No Ladder Fuels, and Make it Lean, Clean, and Green. Under the Know Your Distance section, “Based on the topography of the open space behind the homes located in the Skyline View Association, a defensible space of 30 feet is needed where the slope is relatively flat and at least 100 feet where the slope exceeds 20 percent.” It appears that most (if not all) of our property exceeds the 20 percent slope recommendation; therefore, the defensible space recommendation is 100 feet.
At the November 19th board meeting, members discussed responses to this memo and potential work. The Board is very sensitive to the cost associated with any additional fire mitigation and would welcome your insights with any suggestions homeowners may have.
According to Mr. Palmer’s closing paragraph, maintaining a defensible space is an ongoing activity. The Board will continue to make fire mitigation a priority.