Porterville City Fire Chief Dave LaPere advises Friday, April 30 is the fire season weed abatement deadline for all vegetation on vacant lots, hillsides, rivers, and waterways, on residential and commercial properties in the city limits of Porterville.

The property owner is legally responsible to meet the April 30 deadline. This includes a legal responsibility for suppression costs as well as damage to neighboring properties that may occur as a result of a vegetation fire.

Abatement can be accomplished by discing, mowing, or chopping down with a string trimmer. All cut vegetation must be disced under to bare dirt or raked and removed from the property after cutting.

All properties accessible to a tractor must be disced. Additionally, the property must be maintained throughout the year. Also, property owners must remove any accumulation of solid waste or tires from the property.

LaPere is asking everyone to please be a good neighbor and protect oneself and others from the danger of fire that can result from vegetation on and around property. Property owners are responsible for the removal of weeds, other vegetation, dead or dying trees, solid waste of any description and waste tires on their property in accordance with City of Porterville Municipal Code, Chapter 12, Article III.

The fire department advises it's in the property owner’s best interest to abate the weeds or other nuisance conditions themselves. Failure to do so may result in the issuance of Administrative Citations, which can be in amounts up to $1,000 and may be issued per day.

f the City abates any conditions on the property, additional costs are added to the contractor’s fee to cover the expenses involved in administering the city’s weed abatement program. The actual cost for the abatement and all additional fees are then charged back to the property owner. If property owners need assistance in finding a contractor to do weed abatement, contact the Porterville Fire Department at 782-7526 and a list will be made available to them.

It's important to keep the city of Porterville as fire-safe as possible.. the fire department stated. Grass fires spread rapidly and can threaten structures and endanger lives.

Weeds need to be cleared right up to the fence lines, sidewalks, streets and property lines, including the edge of the banks for properties that border a waterway.

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