Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Lakeside CERT and CVG Radio Map El Monte Valley

Lakeside CERT and CVG members brief prior to taking to the field
On Sunday, July 13, volunteers spent their afternoon serving the citizens of Lakeside in a rather unusual way…grabbing HAM radios and driving throughout El Monte Valley. The effort was to “map” the valley for amateur radio communications in the event of a significant emergency.

Radio communication is often affected by terrain. Knowing where radio “dead spots” are located, as well as areas of strong communication, can make all the difference in a disaster. Having these locations mapped in advance can save valuable time and assist in saving lives.

Radio signal strength is measured in different areas of El Monte Valley
To aid in this effort, members of the Lakeside Fire District’s Communication Volunteer Group (CVG) and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) took to the streets and airwaves in a field exercise. Organized by CVG member Gordon Shackelford, these volunteers drove their personal vehicles to pre-designated spots in the valley and checked out their ability to communicate directly with the “Annex” fire facility located next to the fire station on Lakeside Avenue.

Volunteers were sent to several test locations in the valley
After a couple hours of testing and data collection, the volunteers concluded their efforts and debriefed. The data will be analyzed and eventually displayed on a map in the “Radio Shack” of the Annex. In the event of a major emergency the information on the map will direct CERT and CVG members to areas of good communication to speed response and recovery.

Volunteers check in for signal strength testing
While these volunteers come from two different groups, their objectives are the same - to assist their community in the event of a disaster. CERT personnel are taught disaster response skills such as light rescue and first aid. CVG personnel are tasked with establishing communications on amateur radio bands through a radio network (or “net”) and organize communication between CERT teams in the field. Both programs are vital parts of the District’s disaster response plan and we can’t thank these volunteers enough for their hard work and continued efforts. 

Test results were carefully recorded
For more information on both programs, please go to the District’s website www. Information on the monthly “Emergency Net”, can be obtained by emailing

Story and photos by: Lakeside Division Chief Jim Kirkpatrick

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Consumer Fireworks are Illegal in San Diego County

Lakeside, CA -

There is really only one thing that San Diego County residents need to know when it comes to consumer fireworks: They are illegal.

Every year in the U.S., fireworks are responsible for thousands of injuries, tens of thousands of fires, and millions of dollars in property damage.

There are many public fireworks shows in the county for all to enjoy safely this Independence Day. A listing of fireworks shows can be found HERE.

We hope you all have a "safe and sane" holiday this 4th of July.

Consumer Fireworks are Illegal in San Diego County.

Post by: Captain Scott Culkin, Lakeside Fire District

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Danny Leetch Takes Third at 2014 Firefighters Demolition Derby

San Diego County Fair-

On June 7, 2014, firefighters from San Diego and Orange Counties gathered at the 24th annual Firefighters Demolition Derby at the San Diego County Fair. This annual event has a historical past of pitting the skills of firefighters against one another in this much anticipated event.

The event is conducted in support of the Burn Institute, and the work they do in burn prevention/recovery programs.

After last year's event, Lakeside Firefighter-Paramedic Danny Leetch had brought his car (the "2-20") back to life. Having suffered marginal damage after a distributor cap was sheared off early in the event, it seemed logical to restore the car and give it another shot this year.

In this year's first heat, the 2-20 suffered some pretty severe body damage to the rear of the vehicle, but fortunately it was still strong mechanically. After some quick repairs in the pits, the crew was ready for the final event.

Danny puts a pretty hard hit on the National City entry.
It was pretty evident from the beginning that the final event was going to be a hard fought battle to take the first place trophy. Cars quickly were knocked out of completion with a number of hard hits. At one point the race was suspended when Danny managed to put the 2-20 on top of another vehicle. After the assistance of a backhoe the race was back on.

Danny Leetch with the third place trophy.
The 2-20 showed promise that another win was in the making but after a punishing hit by another vehicle the drive train had suffered race-ending damage.

But in the end, Danny had captured the third place trophy in a very competitive event. Danny has already set out on a plan to field a new entry next year.

Our thanks to the sponsors of the 2-20 entry:

Lakeside Firefighters Local 4488
Famulare Jewelers
Highway 67 Truck
Sparky's Transmission
A&A Muffler
Elite Auto 
Discount Signs and Banners
Santana High School - Auto Body 

Congratulations to the Imperial Beach Firefighters with their first place finish.

We apologize for the audio issues on the video presentation.

Submitted By: Fire Captain Mark Grow, Lakeside Fire Protection District

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Paramedic Trainee Successfully Completes Internship

Lakeside, CA -

Paramedic Trainee Joe McNally successfully completed his field internship at Lakeside fire station 3 on June 4, 2014. Joe was assigned to Medic 3 and completed a total of 576 hours (24 shifts) with paramedic preceptors Brian Moore and Steve Russo responding to calls from the Lake Jennings fire station. The rigorous field-portion of paramedic training is Joe's final hurdle to gaining licensure as a California paramedic.

California paramedic training is among the most rigorous in the country. Most programs require more than 1200 hours of training including didactic, hospital clinical, and the field internship.

Lakeside Firefighter-Paramedics have been helping train interns for more than 30 years. Lakeside Firefighters wish Joe all the best as he begins his new career as a paramedic.

Intern Joe McNally (l) with preceptor FF-PM Brian Moore.

Friday, May 30, 2014

HWY 67 Closed for Major Traffic Collision

Lakeside, CA -

On Friday May 30, 2014, at approximately 3:15 in the afternoon units were requested to respond to Hwy 67 northbound to reports of a head on collision just south of Winter Gardens Blvd.  Lakeside Engine 1 arrived on scene and found two vehicles with major damage, each of which had trapped victims inside.  Additional resources were immediately requested due to the large workload that would be required to extricate multiple patients from separate vehicles.

View 2014 Incident Map in a larger map

The incident, which was being directed by Lakeside Division Chief 4104, utilized engines from Lakeside, Santee, and El Cajon.  Two rescue units were also assigned, Santee R5 and Lakeside R3 from the Lake Jennings Fire Station.  The two patients were in critical condition meaning they would require separate transporting units so two ALS units were requested as well as Mercy Air 6.  
Crews work to extricate patients from separate vehicles
A large quantity of debris was strewn from the accident site

The accident scene was strewn with the contents of both vehicles, a sign of how much energy was involved in the collision.  Hwy 67 had to be completely closed due to the large volume of debris that resulting from the accident.  The closed freeway provided the ability for the fire and law enforcement crews to work safely while extricating the patients.  The road closure also allowed for a very close landing zone for Mercy Air 6.  It is rare to see a medical helicopter set down on a major interstate in San Diego County in the middle of rush hour traffic.  The helicopter, along with the seriousness of the accident, drew crowds of people to the side of the road to watch the incident.

One patient was extricated quickly and immediately transported by Santee Medic 4 to an area trauma center.  The other patient took longer to extricate so Mercy Air 6 was utilized to provide transport to the trauma center.  Once the patients were extricated and the incident was stabilized the California Highway Patrol took over the scene and began an accident investigation.

Mercy Air 6 set down on the closed portion of HWY 67

Photos / Video and Story by Captain Bernie Molloy

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Jet Ski Fire Sends One to Burn Center


On Wednesday, May 28, 2014, at 2:41 p.m. the Heartland Communications Center received a 911 call about a jet ski on fire in the garage of a residence in the 9300 block of Ashley View Pl. A full structural response was initiated that sent three engine companies, one truck company, an ALS medic unit, and a staff officer to the incident.

On the arrival of Engine 3 (Lake Jennings Fire Station), firefighters observed smoke showing from the attached garage of a residential structure. After securing a water supply from a nearby hydrant, crews advanced an attack line into the garage. It was quickly discovered that the fire was isolated to a jet ski. The fire was quickly controlled with a preconnected handline off of E3.

Fire damage to the jet ski was extensive.
Fire crews then discovered that an occupant had suffered flash burns to his upper body. After assessing the injuries the juvenile was transported to the UCSD Burn Center for further evaluation and treatment. The injuries are considered non-life threatening.

Firefighters overhauled the fire and checked for extension into the structure. No structural damage was discovered.

Submitted By: Fire Captain Wes Barnes, Lakeside Fire Protection District

View 2014 Incident Map in a larger map

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

New Employees Receive their Badges

Lakeside River Park Fire Complex-

At the May 27, 2014, Lakeside Fire District Board meeting two recently hired employees received their badges from Fire Chief Andy Parr. The two employees were recently hired from the Lakeside Reserve Firefighter program to full-time positions as Firefighter-Paramedics.

Chad Murray

Chad spent his youth growing up in the Alpine area of the East County. He graduated from Granite Hills High School and then departed on a number of jobs to prepare him for employment in the fire service. Chad has worked as a reserve firefighter with other agencies, and has worked in the pre-hospital field.

Chad receives his badge from his father.
Chad recently graduated from the 25th Heartland Academy where he teamed up with Shane Daunis as squad team members.

Chad was presented with his badge by his father. Both Mom and Dad were in attendance.

Chad with his father and mother after the presentation.
Welcome to the Lakeside family.

Shane Daunis

Shane is 26 years old and was raised in the community of Santee under the careful guidance from his parents Debbie and Fred. Shane has a younger sister, Elle, which undoubtly kept him on his toes.

Shane receives his badge from his father Fred Daunis who served with the Santee Fire Department.
During his time at West Hills High School he enrolled in ROP Fire Science classes. Mined into that schedule was time for swim team and water polo sports. After high school it was off to Miramar College to continue with fire science classes. Soon he was accepted to Southwestern College's paramedic program.

After certification as a paramedic he worked for AMR. Soon he was accepted into the Lakeside Fire District's reserve program. Shortly after being accepted he was enrolled in the 25th Heartland Academy.

Shane with his mother Debbie, father Fred, fiance Caitlin, and sister Elle.
Upon graduating from the academy he was offered a fulltime employment with the Lakeside Fire District. Employment with Lakeside had been a long held dream as his father (Fred) frequently worked out of the Riverview fire station when Medic One was crossed staffed with one Lakeside, and one Santee, firefighter-paramedic. Shane grew up listening to stories his father would bring home about working with the two agencies.

 Shane is also engaged to longtime high school sweetie Caitlin.

Welcome to the Lakeside family Shane.

New firefighters in Lakeside must complete a rigorous one-year probationary period which is part of a comprehensive 36-month step training program.

Submitted By: Fire Captain Mark Grow, Lakeside Fire Protection District