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Wildfire preparation, PG&E power shutoffs discussed at Auburn town hall meeting

Auburn Fire Chief Dave Spencer said he noticed they needed to plan better after the PG&E power shutoffs.

AUBURN, California — A town hall meeting was held in Auburn to prepare for wildfires and PG&E power shutoffs. The meeting was organized by the Auburn Fire Department and the Greater Auburn Area Fire Safe Council.

It was held to encourage fire safety awareness. Auburn Fire Chief Dave Spencer said he noticed they needed to plan better after the PG&E power shutoffs.

"Our community was really not that well prepared," Spencer said. "We've been working to get them understanding that this is gonna be a regular occurrence as we get into these weather events."

Also discussed in the meeting were the factors that led to some of the fires in the last big wind event. The three included transient camps, generators, and power lines.

In the meeting, they talked about generator safety and people shared their concerns, too.

"We have 10 rural acres and I look at some property adjacent to us and it's a thicket that would be very easy to catch on fire," said Ron Paitich.


Spencer is encouraging people to be better prepared, especially with the way fires are changing.

"This is a new time and a new day," Spencer said. "We're seeing catastrophic fires all up and down the state so we need to do things differently, both from emergency services standpoint [and] from our community as well."

Spencer is encouraging people to build a community, get to know their neighbors, and be "fire wise."

"We're asking our community to really understand how important it is for them to be prepared and not rely totally on us," Spencer said. "Our resources are thin and so it's important for them to have their medical materials and all the safety elements they need when it's time."

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