Cal Fire plans pile burns along Empire Grade

To: UC Santa Cruz Community

From: Public Affairs

Cal Fire has advised campus officials that state fire crews will resume burning vegetation piles they have assembled along Empire Grade after this storm system, possibly as soon as Monday, April 1. 

The piles are just north of the Cave Gulch neighborhood, on the ocean side of Empire Grade. Only a few piles will be burned each day, due to staffing. Smoke is not expected to be noticeable on main campus. All piles will be extinguished before Cal Fire leaves the area. 

Pile burns are tightly controlled and typically produce less smoke than prescribed burns. However, persons susceptible to smoke are advised to avoid the area.

Santa Cruz County has not experienced a major wildfire in recent years, but devastating fires throughout California this past fall remind us we all must do our part to prevent them. That includes controlling vegetation in and around campus. The pile burns are part of that effort. 

For more information, please visit our wildland fire resource page online.