Berkeley Hillside Fire Safety Group
"Neighbors working together to mitigate risk and increase our fire safety through preparedness."
The Hillside Fire Safety Group (HFSG) was formed in 2021 under the long-standing Hillside Association of Berkeley (HAB). HFSG is dedicated to fire safety for our community in the Berkeley neighborhood surrounding the former Hillside School, and to advocate for fuel reduction and other safety measures on both private and public properties. The area we represent includes over 1,000 addresses and an estimated 2,500 residents or more.
The devastating 1991 Tunnel fire and more recent fires in California have shown how unexpected and deadly wildfires can be, especially in communities like ours with wild and urban boundaries. Fire safety is even more critical for our community due to frequent droughts and the impact of long-term climate change.
The mission statement for our group is “Neighbors working together to mitigate risk and increase our fire safety through preparedness.” Our principal focus in 2021 was fuel reduction. In cooperation with the University of California Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), we cleaned up the most dangerous location in Berkeley, a small canyon just above Hilgard Avenue that we call “Hidden Canyon” containing over 100 Eucalyptus trees. Berkeley Lab hired a private tree contractor to remove low branches and saplings and clean up the ground on its side of the upper canyon, while we organized six UC Berkeley student volunteer events with over 200 students to clean up the ground in the lower part of the canyon. We are also working with UC Berkeley and the City of Berkeley to clean up all the groves in north Berkeley. These efforts and others will continue in 2022.
We invite you to join our group and email list to receive fire safety information specific to our Berkeley neighborhood area by clicking on this link. We also invite you to make a tax deductive donation using our non-profit status, and to volunteer on one or more of our committees. Information on how to donate can be found here (link) and our committees here (link).
Yours for Fire Safety,