Santa Barbara County Fire Begins 'Defensible Space' Inspections

Property Owners Required to Maintain Wildfire Buffers

A Cal Fire firefighter keeps an eye on the edge of the Thomas Fire as it approaches evacuated structures behind him (Dec. 17, 2017)

Paul Wellman (file)

A Cal Fire firefighter keeps an eye on the edge of the Thomas Fire as it approaches evacuated structures behind him (Dec. 17, 2017)

Property owners throughout Santa Barbara County are required to maintain a wildfire buffer  ​— ​referred to as “defensible space” ​— ​of 100 feet around homes and outbuildings year-round. On June 15, the Santa Barbara County Fire Department will begin inspecting properties and educating owners on compliance. Defensible space is the area around a structure free of flammable plants and objects, according to sbcfire.com. It creates a zone where firefighters can operate safely to protect a home during wildfire.