Debris Removal Requirements after Wildfire

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Private Debris Removal for Unincorporated Sonoma County

Property owners in the unincorporated portions of the county may move forward with hiring their own properly licensed private contractor to complete the Phase 2 debris removal process after Phase 1 is completed and the appropriate private debris removal permit is obtained from the County of Sonoma. Find the requirements for that process on this page, below.

To ensure safety to workers, the public, and the environment, certain protocols must be followed during a wildfire disaster when removing structural ash and debris from a fire.

Due to the public health emergency, property owners are required to remove all burn debris from their properties in a timely manner.

The property owner is required to submit the following to Sonoma County Environmental Health for approval prior to commencing debris removal:
Sonoma County Debris Removal Application
Signed Appendix A
Work plan

After completion of the work described in the approved work plan, the owner must submit a certification showing that all work has been completed as specified.

All cleanup activities must be completed pursuant to standards set forth by the County.

Forms and documents for property owners

Debris Removal Requirements
Debris Removal Application
Social Distancing Protocol & COVID-19 Site-Specific Protection Plan – Appendix A
Sample Site Work Plan
Debris Removal Completion Certification
Conditional Exemptions from Debris Removal Requirements
Debris Removal Exemption Application
Debris Removal Recycling and Disposal Resources

These standards were established to ensure the protection of public health. Documentation of adequate clean-up and proper disposal is required. Property owners are encouraged to review all requirements thoroughly before commencing debris removal. Property owners will not be allowed to build on their property until there is a certification of completion for the property cleanup.

Due to the recent COVID-19 pandemic, California has issued industry guidance for construction. All contractors must read the COVID-19 Industry Guidance for Construction and complete the COVID-19 General Checklist for Construction Employers.

The County is available to answer questions by calling (707) 565-6700 or emailing

To ensure safety to the workers, public, and the environment, certain protocols must be followed after a (wildfire) disaster when removing structural ash and debris from a fire.