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FireFree yard debris disposal events coming up

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Fire season is quickly approaching, now is the time for Central Oregonians to plan to reduce their risk by creating defensible space and taking advantage of upcoming spring FireFree events.

Studies show that if you have created and maintained a defensible space around your home, it has an 80 percent chance of surviving a wildfire without fire department assistance.  Those are great odds and FireFree urges residents to take that bet, and prepare for the upcoming wildfire season.

There are some simple steps you can take to protect your home and community from wildfire. This spring, partners in Deschutes and Jefferson Counties will host FireFree days for local residents.

Now is the time to clean up your yards, create defensible spaces around homes and drop off that debris at FireFree collection sites FOR FREE in Deschutes and Jefferson counties. Please note the Knott landfill FireFree event will happen May 1 to May 16.  The transfer station events held at Negus, Northwest and Southwest will happen in the following weeks May 22  - June 5.  In partnership with Brooks Resources and Bend Fire & Rescue, the west side location off Skyliner will operate during the first three weekends in May. Check the dates below for an event near you:

Knott Landfill’s FireFree event will be held Saturday, May 1 THROUGH Sunday, May 16 during regular operating hours and days

Deschutes County Transfer Sites’ events will be held Saturday, May 22 THROUGH Saturday, June 5. 

Knott Landfill

Seasonal hours- May 1 to October 31 hours: 7 Days/week, 7 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Negus Transfer Station in Redmond
Monday - Saturday, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Northwest (Fryrear) Transfer Station near Sisters
Wednesday - Saturday, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Southwest Transfer Station near La Pine
Wednesday - Saturday, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Westside Collection Site in Bend
Saturday & Sunday, May 1-2, 8-9 and 15-16, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Skyliners Road, west of Miller Elementary, near the Tree Farm subdivision.  From Bend, turn west on Skyliners, then north onto the construction road.

Sunriver Compost Site in Sunriver
Friday & Saturday, May 7-8

Box Canyon Transfer Site in Madras
April 24-25 and May 1-2, 8- 4:30 each day

Frequently Asked Questions

What can I drop off?

Grass clippings, brush, pine needles, pinecones, weeds, trimmings and branches, stumps or trees (no larger than 12” in diameter).
NOT Accepted: rocks, lumber, metal, trash or plastics of any kind, including plastic bags. Sod and dirt.

Where are the most vulnerable places for glowing embers to ignite my home?

  • Gutters and roof valleys filled with debris like pine needles and leaves. Clean them out.  Despite a metal or asphalt shingle roof, the buildup of gutter debris provides necessary fuel for the glowing embers to ignite adjacent fascia boards or siding – most often made of wood.
     
  • Shrubs and weeds that provide a path of fuel for fire to reach your trees or home.  Reduce shrubs and other “ladder fuels” around your home to reduce the threat of ground fires igniting nearby trees, or your home. 
     
  • Flammable materials near a deck, patio or fence.  Remove weeds, shrubs or any combustible materials from around, under or on top of your deck, patio or wood fence.  This includes flammable toys, planters, construction materials, patio furniture and cushions along with even small piles of pine needles or leaves.  
     
  • Bark mulch, pine needles, ornamental junipers or flammable vegetation within 5 feet of your home. This can provide the perfect ember bed that provides the necessary fuel for the glowing embers to ignite the adjacent siding – most often made of wood.
     
  • Woodpiles near your home or other combustible vegetation.  Move woodpiles at least 30 feet away from your home or other combustibles.

Visit the FireFree website at www.firefree.org for more information about how you can prepare your property for wildfire season.

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