The Dinuba Fire Department actively maintains a Weed and Fire Hazard Abatement Program. This program is designed to facilitate the annual clean up and maintenance of properties within the city. The owners of any properties that are deemed by the inspector to be potential fire hazards will be sent notices to remove the hazard. After 15 days, the properties are inspected again. If the hazards have not been removed within 15 days, the owners will receive a 10-day notice to remove the hazard. The properties will be inspected again after 10 days. If the hazards have not been removed after 10 days, the owners will receive a final 5-day pre-citation letter. If the hazards are not corrected within 5 days, the City of Dinuba Fire Department will cite and fine the property owner up to $500.00, using the authority given to the Chief from California Fire Code 103.4.4.
Once a property is determined to have a fire hazard that needs to be cleaned and the owner has received a notice to remove the hazard, that owner is liable for any fire suppression costs incurred if there was to be a fire on the property. This means that the owner may be required to pay the City of Dinuba for the hourly costs of all fire equipment and personnel used to extinguish a fire on their property. This authority to charge property owners for fire suppression is granted to the Fire Chief by Dinuba Municipal Code 3.20.021.
The City of Dinuba Fire Department follows the guidelines and codes from the Uniform Fire Code, California Fire Codes as well as Dinuba Municipal Codes. There are many codes referring to fire hazards on properties, some are listed below:
- California Fire Code Section 1103.2 - “ Storage and Accumulation of Rubbish and Vegetation.”
- California Fire Code Section 1103.2.4 – “ Combustible Vegetation”
- California Fire Code Section 1110.3 – “ Maintenance of Vacant Buildings and Properties.”
- Dinuba Municipal Code 14.52.010 – “ Unsafe Use of Property”
- Dinuba Municipal Code 14.52.010 – “ Hazardous Premises”
Hazardous Weeds and Rubbish Abatement Program
The City of Dinuba manages a proactive Weed Abatement program beginning April 1 and concluding in late summer. Each spring, city staff conducts surveys of all properties within the boundaries of the City of Dinuba. Those parcels with weeds, debris and other hazardous materials are listed for abatement action.
The Hazardous Weeds and Rubbish Abatement Program is designed to protect the residents and properties within the City of Dinuba. This program is important because tall, dry weeds and debris:
- Create a potential fire hazard
- Attract vermin and insects which create a potential health hazard
- Detract from the overall beauty and desirability of the City of Dinuba
The compliance rate by property owners has increased each year. We appreciate your interest and hope the below information helps you understand the City standards for vacant lots and lots with vacant structures.
Thank you for doing your part to keep Dinuba clean and safe!
Notice to Abate – Upon determination by the Fire Chief or his/her designee, all applicable property owners will be notified by mail of the need to voluntarily abate weeds and/or rubbish from the properties. Owners will have 30 days from the date of the letter to clean all weeds and rubbish at the owners expense.
Abatement Ordered – City staff will re-inspect the properties beginning 30 Days after the abatement notice was sent to property owners to determine compliance. If not voluntarily abated by this date, city staff will retain a private contractor to clean the properties.
Cost of Abatement – The cost of abatement shall constitute special assessments against the lot and/or respective parcels of land and is a lien on the property(s) for the amount of the respective assessments and shall include the city’s actual expenses and costs, including, but not limited to, reasonable attorneys’ fees incurred by the city to enforce this chapter, the expenses and costs of the city in the inspection of lots, preparation of notices, specifications and contracts, and in inspecting work, and the costs of printing and mailing required under this chapter for each occurrence of abatement.
City of Dinuba Hazardous Weeds and Rubbish Standards
For the purpose of fire safety and to maintain a clean environment, the City of Dinuba has a weed abatement program for which the Fire Department is responsible. The following standards apply to all properties in the City of Dinuba
- All property must be maintained free of weeds, rubbish, trash, litter, tires, tree stumps and other waste materials. This includes that part of property along adjacent sidewalks, streets, alleys and backyards and within the sidelines of the property thereof extended.
- Weeds, dead growth, rubbish, trash, trimmings, litter or other waste materials that may provide a refuge for rodents or insects must be removed.
- All rubble, junk, concrete, piles of dirt, etc. that could obstruct or impede vehicles and equipment used for abatement work or fire suppression must be removed.
- Tumbleweeds must be hauled away.
- Vacant property must be completely disced or mowed and maintained at a height of less than 6 inches.
- All disking work should be completed so that weeds, grass, or other vegetation or organic material which could possibly burn, are substantially turned over so there is insufficient fuel to sustain or allow the spread of fire.
- Along fence lines and other places where disking may not be possible, hand work including mowing, weed-eating, or hoeing may be utilized.
- These areas must be free and clear of growth and dead vegetation.
The quality of work will be judged by inspection by the Fire Department (559) 591-5931.
Weed Abatement Frequently Asked Questions
When do weed abatement inspections begin?
A survey of all properties will begin on or about April 1. Weed Abatement Posting notices will be mailed and posted on the property throughout the spring season. A re-inspection will be conducted 30 days after the date on the abatement notice. Please remember that property owners are responsible to maintain a hazard free property all year around.
When is the deadline for weed abatement?
The deadline for mowing, discing and/or cleaning properties is generally 30 days after the date on the abatement notice. If late spring rains occur, then properties may need to be mowed or disced several times in order to comply with city standards.
Why did I receive a Posting Notice when my property is clean?
Sometimes a property is cleaned after a property has been initially surveyed. Due to the size of the city, it takes an entire month to survey all lots within the city limits. If you have any doubts about the status of your property, please call the Fire Department at (559) 591-5931.
My neighbor’s house is vacant, possibly foreclosed and the weeds are towering over the fence line. Can I report this property to the Fire Department?
Yes. Any assistance that we can get from the public is greatly appreciated as lots can be accidentally missed during the survey.
There is debris and garbage on my property, and I didn’t put it there – why am I responsible?
If you are the property owner, then you are exclusively responsible for maintaining the condition of that property.
I no longer own the property, why was I sent a Weed Abatement Posting Notice?
At times, the records are not always up to date. The Weed Abatement Posting Notice is sent to the last known owner on Tulare County’s assessment roll. Please let the Fire Department know immediately that you are no longer the owner, by calling (559) 591-5931. Any new owner information is appreciated.