Fire near campus near full containment

To: UC Santa Cruz Community

From: Public Affairs

Fire officials report they have near full containment of a roughly 4-acre vegetation fire that is burning in a steep, heavily wooded area just east of campus, where Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park and Santa Cruz’s Pogonip greenbelt area intersect.

The fire was reported just before 7 a.m., according to the Santa Cruz Fire Department. Roughly 75 personnel responded, with engine crews from Santa Cruz, Cal Fire, as well as the Aptos-La Selva, Branciforte, Central, Felton, and Scotts Valley fire departments. UC Santa Cruz police also responded.

Although there was heavy smoke on parts of UC Santa Cruz as a result of the fire, the cause of which remains under investigation, there was no threat to campus. Fire officials expect to wrap up their efforts later today, though fire crews may use campus fire roads over the next few days to access the area.

Those with respiratory issues are advised to take precautions, as smoke is possible on parts of campus and in the nearby area throughout the day.

Campus officials will continue to work closely with the fire department and local law enforcement agencies until the fire is contained. 

For more information on fire preparedness, response and air quality, visit the university's Office of Emergency Services Fire Procedures website.

Santa Cruz County has been fortunate not to experience a major wildland fire in recent years, but this incident, as well as the nearby Rincon Fire a few days earlier, are reminders that we all must do our part to prevent them. The danger to our campus is real and potentially devastating, as current dry conditions have created an explosive environment. The campus fire-danger is currently rated extreme.

Anyone who smells smoke or sees a fire should immediately dial 911.