Questions & Answers
Sheltering-in-place simply refers to taking refuge in a building, in the event there is an airborne hazard, rather than evacuating from an area. Depending on the situation, it may be safer to quickly shelter-in-place rather than try to drive to a safe area. It might be sheltering at home, at work or in some other other building and if you understand a few principles, it should be easy.
The purpose is to get out of the outside-air and inside a building that is not contaminated. You want to keep the inside-air in, and the outside-air out, until the bad outside-air blows away.
- Close all windows and doors, exterior and interior. Open interior doors as little as possible.
- Turn off all fans, heaters and air conditioners so that they don’t continue to blow outside-air into your house.
- Close the fireplace damper so that outside-air can’t blow down the chimney and inside the building.
- Take water, food and disaster supplies, including a radio, into the most airtight room, preferably one without windows, but with a phone. Bring your pets in with you, along with additional water and food for them.
- Use duct tape or other strong tape to seal all cracks around the door, vents, etc., into the room to help keep out any outside-air.
- Listen on your radio or television for further instructions.
Read this article for further information: https://www.redcross.org/get-help/how-to-prepare-for-emergencies.html
Why do you sometimes wait for a helicopter instead of just getting an injured person to the closest hospital as soon as possible?
Only certain hospitals in the Los Angeles County area are equipped and staffed to treat people who have suffered life-threatening traumatic injuries. Our closest hospital is not a designated trauma center and in most cases it takes less time to have a helicopter transport a victim to a trauma center than it does to drive them in an ambulance.
We also send the fire engine because the 2 paramedics often need help at the scene to do CPR, collect important information about the patient and then load the patient for transport to the hospital. These additional firefighters have to take the fire engine in the event they have an additional alarm.
Everything that we do requires us to work as a team, whatever the emergency. To arrive very quickly, we must stay together and close to our fire apparatus (vehicles). Your safety and ours depends on the team being together and ready to respond immediately at all times.
Residential smoke detectors are early warning devices to wake a sleeping person or persons. Smoke detectors should be placed in each bedroom (sleeping area) and in the hallway leading to the bedrooms.
Having a fire extinguisher in the home is a good idea, but not required by law. If you have an extinguisher, it should be placed where it is easily accessible. The kitchen and garage are good sites for an extinguisher. However, do not place an extinguisher over the stove or buried in storage in the garage, but rather hang it on the wall between three and five feet from the ground.
Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) classes are offered at local community colleges.
You can get it checked at any station by on-duty personnel between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.
The California Fire Code, regulating fire extinguisher requirements varies with the different type of hazard classification of the building. A general rule for a commercial building, with no special hazard classification, is an extinguisher with a 2A:10BC rating placed within 75 feet travel distance to all areas.
We hire firefighters periodically. You must have your paramedic certification.
When responding to a call in the middle of the night, do the firefighters have to sound the fire engine sirens even though traffic is probably light?
Yes, state vehicle code mandates that while responding Code 3, an emergency response vehicle must have all emergency lights on and the siren sounding. A Code 3 response is initiated when life, property or the environment is in immediate jeopardy (i.e. life-threatening emergencies, fire or the release of hazardous materials.)
The firefighters are the first responders for all medical emergencies. Three fire stations are strategically located throughout La Verne, so our response times can have a positive effect on medical emergencies.
Firefighters are on duty 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. La Verne firefighters work 48 hour shifts beginning at 8 a.m. To ensure 24/7 coverage, there are three separate shifts each working an average of 56 hours a week.
Fires are categorized into 4 groups: A, or common combustible fires (including burning paper, wood, etc.); B, or flammable liquid fires (gasoline, cooking oil, etc.); C, or electrical fires; and D, which are flammable metal fires (including magnesium, sodium, etc.). An “ABC” fire extinguisher would be effective on those three types of fires. However, a “BC” fire extinguisher would not be very effective on A-type fires such as burning paper. “D” fires are not very common and “D” extinguishers are not usually sold for home use.
The numbers in front of the letters represent the relative amount of that type of fire which the extinguisher will put out. So a 2A 40BC fire extinguisher will put out 4 times more of a “B” fire (flammable liquid) than a 2A 10BC fire extinguisher.
We can usually have weeds removed prior to fire season if they are taller than 3 inches, and create a fire hazard within 100 feet from a structure (more than 100 feet if in a required fuel modification zone).
Los Angeles County Department of Agriculture takes care of weed abatement on unimproved land (vacant lots) and we take care of other property. You may call the Fire Prevention at 909-596-5991 (Monday-Thursday, 8:00am-4:00pm) for more information.
What are some things people don’t realize when they decide not to evacuate before a threatening brush fire?
They don’t realize how hot it can get outside their house. By the time radiant heat from the brush fire starts houses on fire, they will likely be burned by standing anywhere outside.
They don’t realize that the smoke can get so thick, one can’t see road signs or cars stopped in front of them.
They don’t realize that carbon monoxide and fear can cause them to become disoriented.
They don’t realize that flames from burning vegetation, smoke, emergency vehicles, slow moving traffic, etc. can block their escape.
They don’t realize how many more accidents will occur during a hasty evacuation.
And… they don’t realize how fast fire can move!
There are no regulations mandating the servicing of fire extinguishers placed in single family residences. In apartments and all commercial buildings, fire extinguishers are required to be serviced once a year.
For department call volume and other annual statistics, please refer to our “Statistics” page under the “About LVFD” tab.
Call the fire department at (909) 596-5991 between the hours of 8:00am and 5:00pm. Reports can usually be picked up or mailed. Medical reports are confidential and can only be provided to the patient with proper ID or to a representative of the patient with a signed release. There is a $5.00 fee.
Businesses should contact a fire extinguisher maintenance company to make arrangements for servicing. Look in the Yellow Pages under “Fire Extinguishers”.
Local firefighter academies are located at Mount San Antonio Community College in Walnut, Crafton Hills College in Yucaipa, and Rio Hondo Community College in Whittier. The La Verne Fire Department has both Apprentice Firefighter and Explorer programs.
The gear we wear weighs about 50 pounds. The clothes are called “turn-outs” or “bunker” gear as they originally were turned inside out and kept next to bunks to facilitate a quick change at night. The turnouts are made of a material called Nomex which is fire retardant but not fireproof, so it will burn. We must be able to put our turnouts on in less than a minute. And yes, it does get rather warm in the summer as we must wear this gear when responding to structure fires, hazardous materials incidents, and traffic accidents.
The department’s Ride-Along Program allows Fire and EMS students to observe the day-to-day operations of the department and accompany firefighters on calls. The ride-along averages about four hours. If the student is under 18 years of age, a release form signed by a parent or guardian is required. Phone the business office for more information.
The La Verne Fire Department is an American Heart Association, Community Training Center. We offer the following basic life support CPR classes:
* BLS for Healthcare Provider
* BLS for Healthcare Provider- online renewal (Skills)
* Heartsaver CPR
* Heartsaver AED (Automatic External Defibrillating)
* Heartsaver First Aid with CPR and AED
* Family and Friends CPR
La Verne Fire Department does not service fire extinguishers. We advise you to look in the Yellow Pages for fire extinguisher companies to help you. If your fire extinguisher has a plastic handle and valve, it may be less expensive to buy a new extinguisher than to have the old one serviced. For home use, get one with a minimum 2A 10BC rating.
We are called to assist the public with many different situations. These include but are not restricted to assisting with flooding, helping the elderly or infirm back into bed, and investigating unusual situations (electrical/smoke/possible hazardous conditions). We typically do not rescue cats from trees.
The department does not accept interest cards. The City’s website (www.cityoflaverne.org) posts employment listings when available.
Do firefighters pay for their food when you see them in stores and restaurants or does the City pay for their meals?
Each firefighter pays for his or her own food, whether they eat out or cook at the fire station.
Yes. One type that firefighters particularly dislike is junipers. Often planted next to houses, the plant doesn’t drop its dead growth to the ground and it has many of the same volatile oils found in pine trees. They ignite as easily as dead weeds and burn hot, like pine trees. They are one of the most hazardous plants you could put around your home.
No, the use of any fireworks within the City of La Verne is prohibited.
No! All firefighters are not good cooks; we just let the talented ones in the kitchen. Some firefighters just have a few specialties, but others could, or have been, professional chefs. Each engine company in La Verne FD sets up their meals differently.