Fire preparedness has always been important. But recent wildfires in California only heightened concerns about how to protect important areas and historic structures in the event of a fire.
At Castro Adobe State Historic Park, the restoration plan for the historic two-story adobe building has always included fire suppression, a requirement to open the space as a new state historic park.
Although adobe bricks don’t burn as fiercely as wood might, the adobe building is still very susceptible to fire damage due to the significant amount of wood used in the construction, including in the framing, flooring and the roof.
Plans to add fire suppression features have been in the works for years, though completion was expedited after the devastating CZU Lightning Complex Fire occurred in Santa Cruz and San Mateo counties in August and September, impacting several State Parks in the region.
In summer 2020, a fire suppression system — including a modern sprinkler system — was installed inside the building.
This month, a 10,000-gallon water tank was installed to hold water for the fire suppression system, should the system need to be activated. The tank is connected via underground pipes to the south side of the Castro Adobe. A fire hydrant was included near the tank to provide additional protection for the nearby properties.
The installation will be completed this fall and will provide the Castro Adobe State Historic Park with the needed protection should a fire occur.