The hazy orange sun penetrates smoke-filled Trabuco Canyon at the point of origin of the 2018 Holy Fire.

Unfortunately we have become all too accustomed to this sight in California over the past two summers and autumns. At CalOES, we have been in nearly constant response and recovery modes during these seasons of both 2017 and 2018. Connecting counties with state and federal resources becomes our role during these major presidentially declared disasters, so I wanted to put together a quick guide for some of the most pertinent things to consider during the aftermath of a big disaster in your jurisdiction.

While there is so much more to say on this topic, and so many more details that can be shared on best practices, I wanted to get something out there in the emergency management community to start the conversation. Along with my previous CalOES colleague Randy Styner, I chose to publish this article in the June 2019 IAEM bulletin. This brief article reflects experiences we had in recovery for the Thomas, Hill / Woolsey, Holy, Canyon 2, and Redwood Valley Fires. We hope you find this to be a useful starting point in planning for the response to recovery transition.

DR-4407 Ventura Division Supervisor Jenny Novak and South Branch Director Randy Styner in the Woolsey Fire burn scar area.