PG&E offering free tree removal to landowners impacted by 2021 wildfires
Pacific Gas & Electric Co. will remove for free large-diameter trees it cut down for safety during last year’s wildfires that ravaged large chunks of Northern California as long as landowners allow the work to be done.
The utility said it is offering this service in response to customer and community feedback in the wake of last summer’s fires.
The trees were cut down for safety during PG&E’s 2021 wildfire response.
As PG&E worked to restore power in the wake of the fires — including the Dixie, Monument, McFarland, Salt and Fawn that burned in the North State — crews inspected and cut down hazardous trees that the utility determined posed a potential safety risk to crews and electrical equipment.
PG&E worked with other agencies to do the work.
The Dixie Fire is the second-largest fire in California history, burning 963,309 acres and destroying 1,329 structures in Shasta, Tehama, Lassen, Plumas and Butte counties.
In fact, four of the largest wildfires in state history burned through Northern California last summer, consuming more than 1.6 million acres and destroying 2,504 structures, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said.
In early January, Cal Fire announced that the Dixie was caused by a tree falling into a PG&E power line.
PG&E is offering the free tree removal service to landowners, provided it is safe to do so, the utility said.
The wood is on the landowner’s property and removing it is optional, so the landowner must provide written permission to PG&E to have the wood removed.
PG&E spokesman Paul Moreno said the utility is in the process of contacting affected landowners to offer the free service and provide permission forms.
Other fires in which PG&E will remove wood that was cut down for safety reasons are:
- KNP Complex
- Linda Falls
- North Complex
David Benda covers business, development and anything else that comes up for the USA TODAY Network in Redding. He also writes the weekly "Buzz on the Street" column. He’s part of a team of dedicated reporters that investigate wrongdoing, cover breaking news and tell other stories about your community. Reach him on Twitter @DavidBenda_RS or by phone at 1-530-225-8219. To support and sustain this work, please subscribe today.