MONTEREY (CBS SF) – Cal Fire has declared that fire season has started in Monterey and San Benito counties effective 8 a.m. Monday.

The state fire agency is encouraging people to maintain a minimum of 100 feet of defensible space around their homes by clearing dead or dying vegetation and using fire-resistant plants in their yards.

Cal Fire will still be issuing agricultural and range improvement burn permits until there is deemed to be a risk to public safety and health, although the Monterey Bay Air Resources District restricts dooryard burning between May 1 and Nov. 30.

Campfires are allowed in designated campgrounds in the county or in established facilities on private property with permission of the landowner and local jurisdiction, according to Cal Fire.

Cal Fire has already responded to more than 1,100 wildfires that have burned over 1,800 acres since the start of 2020.

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