Debris Removal


The 2020 Glass Fire devastated many properties in Sonoma County and will require a coordinated fire debris removal cleanup. The City of Santa Rosa and County of Sonoma are working in partnership with the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services to support the community through this process, which includes two phases:

Does your property have ONLY minor burned debris? Properties meeting certain criteria, may request a Phase 2 Conditional Exemption

Fire survivors that reside within the unincorporated county, should visit

Important! Community members should refrain from entering the burn area footprint without personal protective equipment, and do not begin cleanup activities until proper authorization is provided. Hazardous debris after a wildfire can be toxic, and improper transport and disposal of fire debris can create dangerous health impacts throughout the community. Please review the Reentry Packet for returning to properties that have been destroyed or substantially damaged. Reentry Packet: ENGLISH | SPANISH

Phase 1 - Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) Sweeps 

All Phase 1 work is now complete in the Santa Rosa City limits. The process was mandatory for all properties that were identified in CAL FIRE’s damage assessment report and was provided at no cost to the property owner. Phase 1 is the removal of household hazardous waste (HHW) that may pose a threat to human health, animals, and the environment such as batteries, asbestos siding, propane tanks, and paints. Phase 1 was coordinated in conjunction with the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES), California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal EPA), and California Department of Toxic Substance Controls (Cal DTSC). View Phase 1 HHW Sweeps Status Map

Phase 2 – Fire Debris Removal  (Deadline to file paperwork for Phase 2 extended to Feb. 15)

Phase 2 is the removal of the remaining structural ash and debris as well as soil testing to ensure the site is clean, safe for rebuilding, and free of potentially leached toxins. Phase 2 cleanup can only initiate after the Phase 1 HHW Sweep is complete and the property owner has been given proper authorization to begin Phase 2 by the City of Santa Rosa View Phase 2 Debris Removal Progress Map.

Property owners have two options for completing Phase 2:

  • Option 1:  State-operated (Public)

     Debris Removal Program 

A state-sponsored Phase 2 debris removal program (the Consolidated Debris Removal Program) is available as an option for property owners of eligible damaged or destroyed residential structures. To determine if your property is eligible, review the Phase 2 Consolidated Debris Removal Program Eligibility Chart. 

In exchange for the debris removal performed through the government-sponsored program, the property owner agrees that any insurance proceeds in their homeowner's insurance policy designated for debris removal will be collected by the government agency managing the debris removal process. Property owners are not required to pay any additional money to the government agency other than designated debris proceeds in their policies. In no event shall the amount of insurance proceeds paid to to the government agency exceed the costs charged by its contractor(s). 
In the event a property needs additional debris removal after the government agency's contractor has completed the removal under the ROE, all expenses incurred by a property owner for such additional removal will be paid first, and the remainder (if any) will be turned over to the managing government agency.

A "Right of Entry" (ROE) form will be required to participate in this program. The ROE form and all required accompanying documents must be coordinated and submitted through the County of Sonoma Department of Health Services, Environmental Health. To access the ROE form, learn more about how to submit the form, or to schedule an appointment with County Environmental Health staff to get assistance with completing the form, please visit the County of Sonoma website

  • Option 2:  Private Debris Clean-Up

Property owners who do not qualify for, or who chose not to participate in, the public (government-sponsored) debris removal program, must hire a properly licensed private contractor to remove fire debris and clean up their properties. Residents of the City of Santa Rosa, who wish to move forward with private cleanup, must submit a "Glass Fire Debris Removal Application" to the City, prior to the commencement of work. Private debris removal must meet or exceed the standards set by the City of Santa Rosa. This includes compliance with all legal requirements for disposal, authorized disposal sites, best management practices for activities on site, proper transportation and documentation of waste, and erosion control. Property owners may not do the work themselves unless they possess the required certification/ license. 

Property owners who wish to pursue a private contractor to perform Phase 2 debris removal work on their property will bear the costs associated with Phase 2. If you have homeowner’s insurance, debris removal costs may be covered under your policy, and we recommend you consult with your insurance carrier to confirm how much of your policy is dedicated to debris removal.

Download a Glass Fire Private Debris Removal Application
Cleanup Goals - provided by Cal OES Inland Branch for Fire Debris Removal Soil Confirmation and Sampling

Minor Burn Debris Removal/ Cleanup - Requesting a Phase 2 Exemption

Properties containing ONLY minor burned debris will need to apply for an exemption from the Phase 2 debris removal process and follow ALL cleanup protocols outlined by the City of Santa Rosa. Minor burned debris includes the following:

  • A fence
  • Non-structural wood material
  • Non-residential structure(s) that combined total less than 120 square feet
  • Miscellaneous burned items such as patio furniture, barbecues and covers, trampolines, kids toys and play structures, or other recreational/ sporting equipment.

A property falling within the above listed circumstances may apply to the City of Santa Rosa to receive an exemption from the Phase 2 debris removal process and follow the exemption requirements. Additional exemptions may be granted on a case by case basis where the structure is greater than 120 square feet and all material contained within the structure is inert. Property owners must also follow ALL requirements and cleanup protocols listed in the "Santa Rosa Glass Fire Debris Removal Conditional Exemption Requirements and Application" (link below). For questions, contact the City of Santa Rosa at [email protected] or call 707-543-4649. 

Download the Santa Rosa Glass Fire Debris Removal Conditional Exemption Requirements and Application