Agency says county had just 47% of normal rainfall in the 2020-21 season

Staff Report

The Santa Barbara County Fire Department (SBCFD), in conjunction with all other local fire jurisdictions, will declare the beginning of the 2021 high fire season for all areas of Santa Barbara County on May 3. 

During high fire season, all burn permits issued for residential burning and hazard reduction will be suspended. In addition, the SBCFD will be increasing the number of resources (e.g., engines, dozers, crews, helicopters, etc.) responding to reported vegetation fires. 

The SBCFD is urging everyone who lives, works, and visits Santa Barbara County to be extra vigilant about fire safety this season. 

County Fire said the 2020-21 rainy season yielded 47% of the county’s normal rainfall, which has resulted in significantly drier fuels. Combined with dry seasonal grasses for this time of year, this poses a significant risk for ignition and growth of a vegetation fire. 

The State of California has made available $165 million in grants in 2021 to develop and carry out fire prevention projects throughout the state. The Santa Barbara County Fire Department is actively applying for this funding to continue to build upon our already robust prevention programs within the county. 

The Santa Barbara County Fire Department reminds the public to maintain vegetation clearance around structures, review and be familiar with the “Ready! Set! Go!” wildfire action plan, and be extra cautious and aware when traveling or staying in the wildland areas of the county. 

For more information about Ready! Set! Go! please visit