Code Section Group

Public Resources Code - PRC

DIVISION 4. FORESTS, FORESTRY AND RANGE AND FORAGE LANDS [4001 - 4958]

  ( Division 4 repealed and added by Stats. 1965, Ch. 1144. )

PART 2. PROTECTION OF FOREST, RANGE AND FORAGE LANDS [4101 - 4789.7]

  ( Part 2 added by Stats. 1965, Ch. 1144. )

CHAPTER 1. Prevention and Control of Forest Fires [4101 - 4205]

  ( Chapter 1 added by Stats. 1965, Ch. 1144. )

ARTICLE 5. Firewardens and Firefighting Personnel [4151 - 4157]
  ( Article 5 added by Stats. 1965, Ch. 1144. )

4151.
  

(a) The director shall appoint, in a number and localities as the director deems wise, public-spirited citizens to act as voluntary firewardens, who may receive payment for their services from the counties or from private sources. They shall promptly report all fires and take immediate and active steps toward their extinguishment, report any violation of forest fire laws, assist in apprehending and convicting offenders, and perform other duties as the director may direct. A United States Forest Service employee within this state, if the employee accepts the duties and responsibilities of a firewarden, may be appointed a voluntary firewarden, and shall have all the powers given to firewardens by this article.

(b) The firewardens do not have authority to obligate the state for the payment of money, unless specifically authorized by the director.

(Amended by Stats. 2021, Ch. 133, Sec. 53. (SB 272) Effective July 23, 2021.)

4152.
  

If a fire patrol for the prevention and suppression of forest fires is maintained by owners of land or by any organization, the director may designate each patrol person as a voluntary firewarden and, for the protection of lands patrolled by them or adjacent to those lands, may give them all the rights and powers of a voluntary firewarden. Voluntary firewardens shall be paid by the owners or organizations or as provided for by Section 4151. The firewardens do not have authority to obligate the state for the payment of money, unless specifically authorized by the director.

(Amended by Stats. 2021, Ch. 133, Sec. 54. (SB 272) Effective July 23, 2021.)

4153.
  

The department or its duly authorized agent may summon an able-bodied person to assist in suppressing a forest fire and may authorize an officer of the state, who is charged with the prevention and suppression of fire or the enforcement of the state fire laws, to summon an able-bodied person to assist in suppressing a forest fire within their respective jurisdictions. An able-bodied person who is engaged in the harvest of perishable agricultural crops shall not, however, be summoned to assist in suppressing a forest fire until all other available workpower has been exhausted within the respective jurisdiction of the officer issuing the summons. A member in good standing of a regularly organized fire department shall not be summoned if the member is available and subject to call for duty with a firefighting unit.

(Amended by Stats. 2021, Ch. 133, Sec. 55. (SB 272) Effective July 23, 2021.)

4154.
  

Any person who fails to obey a summons which is authorized by Section 4153 is guilty of a violation of this article.

(Repealed and added by Stats. 1965, Ch. 1144.)

4155.
  

Every person who in obedience to such summons assists in extinguishing any forest fire shall be compensated at the same wage rate, excluding fringe benefits, as state employees performing like services.

(Amended by Stats. 1969, Ch. 500.)

4156.
  

(a) The director and employees or classes of employees of the department designated by the director have the powers conferred by law upon peace officers listed in Section 830.2 of the Penal Code, and voluntary firewardens designated by the director have the powers conferred by law upon peace officers listed in Section 830.37 of the Penal Code; provided, however, that the primary duty of the peace officer shall be the enforcement of forest laws and regulations, state and county fire laws and regulations, and the laws relating to explosives as set forth in Part 1 (commencing with Section 12000) of Division 11 of the Health and Safety Code, other than laws the enforcement of which is primarily the responsibility of the State Fire Marshal. Officers, employees, and voluntary firewardens, upon request pursuant to Section 8597 of the Government Code, shall have the full powers and duties of peace officers for all purposes as provided by the Penal Code and are not liable to civil action for trespass committed in the discharge of their duties.

(b) A peace officer may enforce federal fire laws to the extent that the peace officer is authorized to do so.

(Amended by Stats. 2021, Ch. 133, Sec. 56. (SB 272) Effective July 23, 2021.)

4157.
  

When the director or any of the employees or voluntary firewardens who are designated as peace officers pursuant to Section 4156 arrests a person for a violation of this article or for a violation of a law relating to forest or fire protection that is not a felony, the director or any of the employees or voluntary firewardens who are designated as peace officers may immediately release the arrested person from their custody in the manner and under the conditions that are set forth in Section 853.6 of the Penal Code.

(Amended by Stats. 2021, Ch. 133, Sec. 57. (SB 272) Effective July 23, 2021.)

PRCPublic Resources Code - PRC5.