Thomas Fire Debris Removal
The debris that remains from a structure that was destroyed in the Thomas fire may contain hazardous waste and materials that can threaten public health. It is therefore very important that this debris be properly inspected and disposed. To expedite recovery activities and ensure the safe removal of hazardous waste and fire debris, the county is coordinating with state to remove hazardous waste and fire debris from structures and properties damaged by the wildfire using the state Fire Debris Removal Program. There are two phases to this State program:
- Phase One: Household hazardous waste (HHW) removal – English | Español, and
- Phase Two: Debris and ash removal.
Phase One: Household Hazardous Waste Removal
During Phase One, teams from the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) along with Environmental Health Division will inspect your property and remove any household hazardous waste that may pose a threat to human health and the environment such as batteries, identifiable asbestos, pesticides, cleaning products and paints. There is no cost to the property owner for this work and you do not need to file a request to participate. Once your property is cleared, a yellow clearance notice will be posted on the property. This phase of the work began on Monday, December 18th.
To view the status of your property in the Phase One Debris Removal process, see DTSC map: http://dtsc.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=c9ed8c665cba44059a39c3f0557bf05d
Phase Two: Debris Removal and Property Clean-up
Option 1: CalOES Fire Damage Debris Clearance Program (State Program)
During Phase Two, teams from the State (CalRecycle) will remove the remaining debris (including building foundations) from properties with destroyed structures. You will need to provide Right-of-Entry (ROE) Permit and insurance information before the work can be done. This work will include removal of all burnt debris, foundations, hazardous trees, and some soil to ensure the site is clean and safe for building. A summary of type of debris eligible for removal under the State Program can be found here. All of the work is undertaken by CalRecycle contractors and there is no cost to the property owner; however, any insurance proceeds for debris removal shall be dedicated to off-set costs.
Click the image below to view the CalRecycle Debris Informational Meeting held in Ventura
Ventura County Environmental Health must receive this ROE Permit on or before January 22, 2018.
For more information on the CalOES Fire Damage Debris Clearance Program, including answers to questions regarding insurance coverage, click here: FAQ English | FAQ Español
Please submit a completed Right-of-Entry Permit to the Ventura County Environmental Health Division public counter at:
- Ventura County Environmental Health Division
Hall of Administration
800 S. Victoria Ave. Ventura, CA 93009-1730, or
- Email: EHDThomasfire@ventura.org
It is recommended that forms be submitted in person.
For more information on debris removal choices, click below:
Frequently Asked Questions
Exemption from Local Program Requirements Fire Debris Removal
Ventura County Emergency Ordinance for Abatement of Hazardous Material and Debris
Additional Information and Resources
Click Here for Upcoming Community Meeting Information
Additional information regarding fire debris removal is provided below.
Mar 21, 2018
VENTURA, California – Due to the potential for significant rainfall with the anticipated storm events and mandatory evacuations in many of the burn areas, OES/CalRecycle will suspend all fire debris removal activities in the Thomas Fire burn areas. Beginning at noon today, OES/CalRecycle started pulling back crews away from potential flood/debris flow areas. Debris removal […]
Feb 9, 2018
VENTURA, Calif. – Teams of bulldozers, excavators and other heavy equipment are working throughout the Thomas Fire burn areas as CalRecycle works to clear debris. Thirty-five teams are clearing properties with an expected completion date in April. Property owners who have not signed up for the CalRecycle program, or the County’s local program, face the […]
Jan 25, 2018
Hundreds of Ventura County residential structures were either completely destroyed or partially destroyed due to the Thomas Fire. These guidelines are intended to provide guidance for crews that will be removing residential fire debris resulting from the Thomas Fire. They are intended to facilitate the prompt removal of residential fire debris while also protecting public […]
Jan 19, 2018
Existing footings, slabs, and foundation systems in fire-destroyed buildings are not typically permitted to be re-used. The effects of intense heat and fire on a foundation system renders the foundation unusable, or impractical for re-use for the following reasons: The ground beneath the foundation must be tested to ensure it is free of contaminants and […]
Jan 16, 2018
County of Ventura: Local Fire Debris Removal Program (Local Program) Property owners who do not qualify for, or who choose not to participate in the State Program, must hire a private contractor to remove fire debris and clean up their properties. Local debris removal must follow the standards adopted by the County of Ventura, which [...]6
Jan 16, 2018
For Partially Burned or Damaged Structures in Unincorporated Ventura County Property owners whose residential structure(s) and accessory structure(s) sustained partial damage are still subject to Ventura County Ordinance 4515. They do not need to submit the Local Fire Debris Removal Program Application and Work Plan. However, prior to obtaining demolition or building permits from Ventura […]
Jan 16, 2018
Option 2: Local Fire Debris Removal Program (Local Program) Property owners who do not qualify for, or who chose not to participate in the CalOES Fire Damage Debris Clearance Program (State Program), must hire a private contractor to remove fire debris and clean up their properties. A Local Fire Debris Removal application and workplan must [...]8
Jan 16, 2018
Option 1: CalOES Fire Damage Debris Clearance Program (State Program) Due January 22, 2018 Property Owner Checklist for Residential Debris Removal Right-of-Entry Permit Ventura County Environmental Health is working with CalOES and other federal and state partners in a program to facilitate safe removal and handling of burn debris and ash. To obtain this service […]
Jan 10, 2018
Cal Recycle will be removing ash and debris from the homes burned in the Thomas Fire beginning January 19, 2018 and extending into April, 2018. Cal Recycle adheres to strict health standards during the removal process. These standards are designed to protect both the debris removal staff and the public. Homes built before the mid-1970’s […]
Jan 3, 2018
VENTURA, Calif. – Informational meetings have been set for residents affected by the Thomas Fire who are seeking debris removal services from CalRecycle for severely damaged/ or destroyed property. Two meetings will be held in Ventura. Meetings will also be held in Ojai and Santa Paula. Fire victims are invited to attend whichever meeting is […]