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Laguna Beach Fire Department

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The Fire Department is organized into two budgetary divisions, Fire Operations/Training and Fire Prevention. The Department responds to approximately 2,400 requests for emergency service. The majority (50%) of these incidents are emergency medical related. Responses to fires in buildings, vehicles or the wild land account for another 15% of the Department’s emergency responses; 15% of emergency responses are rescues involving trapped persons as a result of vehicle accidents, falls from a cliff, construction site accidents, and weather related incidents. The Department also responds to spills and releases of hazardous materials, public service and other miscellaneous requests, which account for the remaining 20% of the Fire Department’s incident responses. The Department maintains a fully-equipped emergency response force of twelve firefighters on duty, at all times, assigned to suppression; in addition to 4 staff personnel, 15 reserve firefighters, and an administrative secretary. A description of services provided by each division is as follows:

Operations/Training Division – There are four fire stations in the City: Station One at City Hall, Station Two on Agate Street, Station Three at Top of the World, and Station Four in South Laguna. Each station has a Fire Captain, Fire Engineer, and Firefighter who work 24 hour shifts from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. One engine company operates out of each station and there is one reserve unit as backup. Station Two has a four-wheel drive brush unit that is specifically designed to go into the wildland interface areas. Station Four has a squad that is equipped to respond to fuel spills, water removal calls, and board-ups. Station One has a utility vehicle that responds to public service calls such as flooding and mudslides. The Department also has access to one engine supplied by the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (OES) which is activated as part of the mutual aid system in the case of a major wildland fire or other emergency. The Department has fifteen personnel with paramedic training who staff two paramedic engine companies that respond from Station One and Station Four. These engine companies have specialized equipment for medical emergency incidents and at least two of the three firefighters are paramedics. Firefighter/Paramedics respond to all medical emergencies within the City. In addition to fire suppression and paramedic responsibilities, fire personnel are involved in a number of other activities. They maintain the stations and associated equipment, participate in advanced and skills maintenance-training programs, and conduct fire prevention inspections annually in local businesses as well as residences adjacent to open space areas.

Fire Prevention Division – The Fire Prevention Division manages the daily fire prevention activities and inspections of the engine companies; the plan review and new construction process; supervises the fire investigators; and oversees the vegetation management programs.

The vegetation management program is divided into two sub-divisions, weed abatement and fuel-modification. The weed abatement program reduces fire hazards that result from uncontrolled growth of vegetation on private properties. The fuel management program consists of approximately 1,500 acres surrounding the exterior of the City, along the open wildland areas, where vegetation is reduced creating fuel breaks to protect residential structures. The fuel modification program is accomplished and maintained through the use of goats.

Major Initiatives:

  • Enhance the training and professional development of all personnel.
  • Continue to review and enhance Fire Department communications and dispatch procedures.
  • Continue to review and enhance Fire Department fleet maintenance procedures.
  • Enhance Firefighter safety through the new of new technologies that are now available.
  • Enhance the Information Technology capabilities of the Fire Department through improvements in telecommunications, network connections, and software and hardware acquisitions where applicable and in concert with the City’s Information Technology Division’s recommendations.
  • Address the repairs needed to the Fire Department’s facilities and fire stations through the establishment of priorities in concert with funding availabilities for immediate needs and support the City’s Facility Study that will be conducted by a consultant for future predicted issues.

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