FAQ Topic: Public Safety

Schedule a Full Defensible Space Inspection 

A full defensible space inspection is required for your grant application to be processed. If your property was fully inspected and you have not received your report, please email srfd.dspace@cityofsanrafael.org for your report. If you were left a notice and did not receive a full inspection, please schedule a full inspection below.   A defensible … Continued

Available Grant Funding 

The City will offer up to $500 per applicant to cover the expenses relating to vegetation management/fuel reduction. The City will also offer up to $500 for home hardening without requiring matching funds.   To receive more than $500, a resident must match the expense. A resident is limited to $1,000 in assistance for vegetation … Continued

Rules and Regulations

Note: The City and MWPA follow a fiscal year that runs from July 1st-June 30th each year. All grant applications received after June 15, 2023 at 5pm will be null and void for the 22-23 fiscal year. Grants applications received after the deadline will be processed in the upcoming fiscal year. Retro applications will not … Continued

Eligible Recipients 

All San Rafael residents who have had a full defensible space inspection are eligible for the Wildfire Mitigation Grant Program. Homeowners can schedule an FREE assessment. Please see below on how to schedule an inspection. Only the person directly incurring the expense will be eligible for reimbursement. In general, this will be the property owner, however a tenant that can … Continued

Are There Any Exemptions to S.R.M.C. 4.12?

Exemptions to these regulations, including for erosion control, may be granted at the discretion of the fire chief or their designee. Please find more information at: srfd.org/exemption-program/

Evacuation route clearance

Evacuation route clearance has been focused primarily on hillside neighborhoods with terraced or narrow roads. During an emergency, these roads need to be open and clear of vegetation along the road edge to help facilitate safe evacuation and egress for emergency response.

Fire road vegetation clearance

Fire road vegetation clearance helps keep fire roads throughout San Rafael open and passable for emergency response vehicles in the event of a wildfire. Fuel reduction along these roads consists of creating shaded and unshaded fuel breaks of the road edges, up to 50 feet in some areas. Many of the fire roads in San … Continued


Goat grazing and mowing remove light and flashy fuels in grassland or lightly wooded areas. These unshaded and shaded fuel breaks help slow the spread of wildfire and will be seen primarily in the defensible space zone that extends 100’-150’ from homes or infrastructure into open space areas. Goats arrive in San Rafael and Marinwood … Continued

Shaded Fuel Break

A shaded fuel break consists of removing or modifying the vegetation in the understory of a wooded or forested area while retaining a large portion of the canopy. These projects will focus on removing light flashy fuels like grass, shrubs, invasive species like broom, and lower limbs of trees to reduce ladder fuels and create … Continued

Our Property Line Is 10’ From Our Home and There Are Several Properties Adjoining, All with Overgrown Vegetation. Do Our Neighbors Have Responsibility to Maintain Defensible Space on Their Land Adjoining Us?

Yes, San Rafael code requires all property owners to maintain defensible space. Some other Marin fire agencies have also adopted fire code language that may require neighboring properties to provide some vegetation clearance to protect their neighbor’s home. State law does not necessarily require this. San Rafael and FIRESafe MARIN encourage neighbors to work together … Continued

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