Tuesday, June 29, 2010

New Update on the Riverpark Fire Station

Chief Parr has posted a new update on the progress of the Riverpark Fire Station. You can view the update by clicking on the Riverpark Station button above, or click this link:


Sunday, June 27, 2010

Lakeside Fire Units Assist with Santee Vegetation Fire

Santee / Miramar-   Lakeside Fire Department Units Brush 2 and Battalion 1 were called to provide assistance to Santee Fire Department to suppress a fire North of Santee Lakes which eventually burned onto property on the MCAS Miramar Base.  The fire was held to approximately 260 acres thanks to the hard work of all of the cooperating agencies which included several agencies from the Central Zone as well as Miramar Fire Department, Cal Fire and USFS.

Lakeside Brush 2 pumps a hose line on Division Z
 The Lakeside Units were assigned to Division Z, which was the northern flank of the fire.  Acting Lakeside Battalion Chief Charles Weber was the Division Supervisor for Division Z, ultimately responsible for coordinating all of the suppression efforts on the north side of the fire.  Lakeside Brush 2 was one of the two engines used to provide water to the north end of the fire, which required approximately 5,000 ft. of 1.5" hose to extinguish.

A portable water tank is set up to provide water for the fire suppression
 A portable water tank was set up to address the need for water utilized for fire suppression and overhaul.    These tanks hold up to 1,500 gallons of water which are filled by Water Tenders, such as the one pictured above, to provide a constant source of water during the fire.  In remote locations water supply proves to be a challenging obstacle which must be addressed early on.  Having a steady flow of water helps expedite suppression and provide for crew safety during wildfire operations.

Protecting the Oak Trees was a priority on this fire
 Protecting property as well as the environment are priorities in wildland firefighting.  When a fire is burning through an area with trees that are able to be saved firefighters will try to keep the fire in the low laying ground fuels out of the trees and taller vegetation that take much longer to grow back.  This is not always possible but something we do if we can.

The fire pushing East towards the road

Lakeside Captain Victor Gonzales and Firefighter/Paramedic Eric Stamm waiting to put the fire out when it reaches the road
Firefighters commonly use dirt roads to help stop the fire.  In the picture above Lakeside firefighters wait for the fire to reach the road before extinguishing it.  This method helps provide for crew safety by allowing them to stand in an area the will not burn while putting out the fire.  It also decreases the work and time required to overhaul a fire by letting it burn up to an existing fire break.

A view of the grass after it had burned up to the road

This fire was an example of how effective our existing automatic and mutual aid systems are in Southern California.  If there was not the rapid response by several agencies who were able to seamlessly work in conjunction with one another this fire would have been much larger.  Using a well coordinated attack the firefighters on scene were able to keep this fire away from any populated areas thereby achieving our primary goal to provide for life safety.

View Lakeside Incidents and Story Map in a larger map

Story submitted by: Firefighter / Paramedic Bernie Molloy

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Occupants Escape with Minor Injuries on Highway 8 Business

Glenview: On Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010 at 9:39 AM, the Lakeside Fire District dispatched an engine company, rescue company, ALS ambulance, and Battalion Chief to a reported vehicle accident in the 13500 block of Highway 8 Business. On the arrival of Rescue 3 (Lake Jennings Station) they encountered two vehicles with significant damage, and some property damage as a result of one of the cars leaving the roadway.

Lakeside Fire personnel assess a victim of this moderate velocity accident.
On initial assessment paramedics initiated treatment on an occupant that complained of neck pain. All other occupants denied injury. Fortunately because of the use of shoulder and lap restraints by all parties none of the injuries are considered "life threatening".

CHP is currently investigating the accident. A total of 9 Lakeside Fire personnel responded to the incident.

Submitted By: Captain Mark Grow, Lakeside Fire District

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Lakeside Firefighters Participate in Countywide Rescue Drill

San Diego: Lakeside Firefighters attended the countywide Technical Rescue Drill at the San Diego Fire-Rescue training center at Camp Nimitz on Saturday, June 19, 2010. The C-division crew from the Lake Jennings fire station (fs3) joined other fire department rescue companies from all over San Diego County for this terrific training opportunity.

During the daylong drill, each assigned division was presented with a challenging technical rescue scenario. The crew from Lakeside Rescue 3 was assigned to division Bravo and, with other fire crews from Carlsbad, Miramar, and Santee fire departments, had to make entry to a simulated building collapse to perform search and rescue trapped occupants. This invaluable training presented the opportunity to practice many essential technical rescue skills such as wall breaching, tunneling, shoring, and victim removal.

 Lakeside Firefighters acknowledge the tremendous amount of planning and hard work that went into making this drill happen. We would like to thank the San Diego Fire-Rescue department for a job well done.

Carlsbad Captain Scott Lollis keeps an eye on the entrance to the
"building collapse" while Santee Captain Larry Roberts directs operations.

A Miramar F.D. firefighter makes his way through a tight space.

Carlsbad Firefighter/Paramedic Kevin Lynds tunneling in.

The "cut team" fabricates custom shoring on site.

Story and photos submitted by: Captain Scott Culkin, Lakeside Fire District

Friday, June 18, 2010

Multi-Company Drill on the Cliffs

Peutz Valley: If hanging off a 200 foot cliff on a rope, and slowly being lowered into an area full of posion oak is your thing....well you missed out. Lakeside crews travelled to the Peutz Valley area to conduct a multi-company drill in the rugged terrain above El Capitan Reservoir.

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Departure point for crew members going over the side.
Crews conducted a drill that involved lowering personnel into an inaccessible area 200’ below the trail network. In technical rescue it’s essential that we get personnel to the victim as quickly as possible. The status of the victim will determine on how we will extricate the victim. It’s important that these injured parties received prompt definitive care at a hospital, so our entire plan revolves around this goal.

Engineer Robert Williams about halfway down the cliff. After this point the "fun" with the poison oak begins. 
Crews are tasked with anchoring to rocks and vegetation in the area, with sufficient strength to conduct rescue operations. This tends to put some out of their comfort zone as firefighters are use to anchoring to 40,000 pound fire trucks. But with load sharing anchoring, and a back-up safety line, these rescue are pretty safe.

If you look carefully you can see the firefighter on the cliff. At this point they are about a quarter of the way down
Submitted By: Captain Mark Grow, Lakeside Fire District

Lakeside, Alpine and Viejas Fire Departments Train in Trench Rescues

Viejas: Woven throughout virtually every community are a series of underground utilities that at some point required a trench to place the equipment. Trenching operations for the most part are safe and typically don’t have disastrous outcomes, but for those operations that skirt current OSHA regulations, or trenching equipment is used improperly, the outcome can result in severe injuries or death.

Padre Dam Municipal Water District sent their vacuum truck capable of removing 12 yards of dirt per load. These trucks are considered important tools in trench rescue.
Till the late 1980’s fire agencies had little formal training on trench collapse, in many cases the rescuers would become additional victims. Statistically 25% of all victims are “would-be-rescuers.” This number includes co-workers and first responders that entered the trench and soon became trapped.

Santee Fire Captain David Leask demonstrates a set of Speed Shores.

So problematic were the issues that soon OSHA would mandate that “trench rescue teams” had to have mandated training, and that their rescue operations would meet the same industry standards that everyone was subjected to.

Lakeside Engineer Steve Schleif lowers a set of speed shores into a trench opening.

Soon the fire service responded by established formal training programs, and outfitting specialized teams that carried the unique equipment required at these operations. At some point in every firefighters career they receive this training.

A firefighter works on the lower strut inside of the trench. Room is a premium once inside of the trench.

Recently this complex training was made available to agencies on the eastern edge of the Central Zone (old Heartland Zone), through funding from San Diego Gas and Electric. Firefighters from Lakeside, Alpine, and Viejas were invited to participate in the two day training.

Viejas provided the site where a series of complex trenches could be dug to hold the training, and the Santee Fire Department supplied the instructors and technical expertise for the training. Currently the Santee Fire Department has an active confined space/trench rescue program jointly funded with the Padre Dam Municipal Water District.

Firefighters work to create a safe area where rescue operation can begin.

The two day class involved orientation to current OSHA standards that affect rescue operations, orientation to commercially available shoring devices, and improvised shoring operations. The last day crews spend the entire day in the trenches tackling complex shoring operations and  simulated emergency situations.

Two firefighters work a the bottom of a trench to remove a simulated victim.

The Lakeside Fire District would like to thank the following participants:

San Diego Gas and Electric - Provided funding for the entire training and related costs.
Viejas: For providing the training site and the hospitality.
Santee Fire Department: For providing the instructors and technical expertise.
Padre Dam Municipal Water District: For sending specialized equipment to the drill site.

Submitted By: Captain Mark Grow, Lakeside Fire District

Monday, June 14, 2010

Another Series Of Quakes Shake The Area

Did you feel them? On Monday night June 14th, at approximately 9:26pm a series of earthquakes rattled the area. The tremors were centered 5 miles SE of Ocotillo in Imperial County with the largest measuring   5.7 in magnitude.
Visit the USGS Earthquake page for more detailed information about these quakes.

View Larger Map

Are you prepared for a disaster such as a large earthquake? Are you able to survive on your own for up to 72 hours while our local emergency service providers deal with overwhelming demands? If not, take advantage of the training offered by the Lakeside Fire District CERT program. Learn about disaster preparedness, fire safety, emergency medical techniques, search and rescue and much more. If preparedness is important to you, visit the Lakeside Fire District website and fill out an interest form.
Now is a good time to start being prepared.
Visit this story about Lakeside CERT on our blog.

Follow these links to other informative disaster preparedness websites:

Ready San Diego
San Diego Area American Red Cross
SD County Office of Emergency Services
Real Time Earthquake Information

Submitted by: Chuck Palmore, Lakeside Fire Captain

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Lakeside Firefighters Log Some Rescue Training

Johnstown: Firefighters at Lakeside's Lake Jennings fire station got in some rescue training on Sunday morning, June 13, 2010. The rescue system they practiced rigging was a "ladder gin" utilizing a "pig-rig" haul system.
The ladder gin/pig-rig may be utilized to create a high-point for a vertical lift-type rescue. It is a very strong and versatile system when properly rigged and anchored.

This type of technical rescue training is typical of what Lakeside Firefighters frequently perform every year.

Station 3 C-shift laying-out the ladder gin

FF/PM Bernie Molloy rigging the "pig-rig."

Using Rescue 3 as the anchor, firefighters get the angle just right.

Safely in his Class III harness, FF/PM Jamie Hazlewood "loads" the system.

Story and Photos Submitted by: Captain Scott Culkin, Lakeside Fire District

Lakeside's 6th CERT Academy Begins Today

The first of four Saturday training sessions took place today at the Lakeside Fire Protection District's administration facility at 12365 Parkside Street. Twelve members of the community completed the initial five hours of the required 20 hour CERT disaster preparedness course to become registered San Diego County Emergency Disaster Workers. The full course provides the participant with instruction and hands-on training in the areas of disaster preparedness, fire safety, disaster medical operations, light search and rescue, disaster psychology, terrorism awareness and CERT organization.

New CERT members learn to work as a team with limited supplies and time to complete a project.

This will be the 6th group or "Academy" to have been trained in Lakeside and will bring the total number of local CERT members to well over 60. The topics covered in this first session included how to prepare yourself, your family and your home for the disasters most likely to occur in our community including wildfires, earthquakes, floods and terrorism to name just a few.

A fire suppression team makes quick work of these flames.

Fire safety and the use of fire extinguishers to suppress small fires preventing them from becoming BIG fires completed today's training.
To learn more about CERT and to inquire about how you can take advantage of this valuable training, visit lakesidefire.net. Also visit the CitizenCorps CERT website HERE for a detailed description of the nationwide program.

Another suppression team under the watchful eyes of Fire Captain Steve Streck and his crew.

Follow these links to other informative disaster preparedness websites:

Ready San Diego
San Diego Area American Red Cross
SD County Office of Emergency Services
Real Time Earthquake Information

Submitted by: Chuck Palmore, Lakeside Fire Captain

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Lakeside Firefighters Help Kick-off Relay for Life

Lakeside Middle School is hosting Lakeside's First Annual Relay For Life event.  The event is coordinated by The American Cancer Society and lasts for 24 hours.  The relay is comprised of teams camped out at the event in tents and RVs with friends and family members to cheer them on.  Each team is asked to have a member on the track at all times during the event. Because cancer never sleeps, Relays are overnight events.

The American Cancer Society Relay For Life unites communities across the country each year to celebrate the lives of those who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost, and fight back against a disease that often takes too much. The Lakeside Fire Department had the privilege to help kick-off the event by leading a group of cancer survivors around the track for the first lap.  

 Submitted By: Firefighter/Paramedic Matthew Buzzell, Lakeside Fire District

Friday, June 11, 2010

Lakeside Firefighters Take Part in Annual Fire School

Fires are set in the vast open spaces of Camp Pendleton
On June 10th, 2010, Firefighters from Lakeside's Blossom Valley fire station (fs-26) were sent to Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton for a very unique training opportunity.  Brush 26 along with Engines from agencies all over the Southern California area took part in live wildland fire training exercises put on by US Forest Service.   The training is called Fire School, and units from agencies as far away as LA County and Big Bear City got together for some joint command and fire suppression training.

Fire crews respond, extinguish the fires, regroup and do it again.

Fire school is a large-scale exercise that is put on annually by the US Forest Service to build and strengthen fire officer and firefighter-level skills.  All exercises are planned, supervised, and evaluated by certified Fire School instructors. The training is conducted over the course of several days and the fighting of live fire is used to make the scenarios as realistic as possible.

 A "training" fire does not behave differently than a real fire.

These “real life” scenarios give crews the ability to perfect their incident management, progressive hose lay and handline construction skills while under the same conditions of a true fire emergency.

Firefighters attack multiple fires throughout the long day of training.

 Submitted by: Engineer Ian Lowe, Lakeside Fire District

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Lakeside Firefighters Assist at Spring Valley Brush Fire

Fire crews work the steep hillside above Spring Valley and the Sweetwater Reservoir
Dictionary Hill: As the weather in our county continues to increase in heat, so does the frequency and intensity of brush fires. This was the case today in the San Miguel Fire Protection District in Spring Valley. A fire broke out just after 11:00am and spread rapidly in dry grass and vegetation on the steep hillside racing towards the homes above (map). Thanks to the quick response by San Miguel units and automatic aid from Bonita, Santee, Lakeside and San Diego Copters 10 and 12 the blaze was brought under control before structures were lost.

Lakeside Firefighter Todd Welch and Engineer Steve Thompson "Mop Up" the hot spots.

The tall grass crop that has grown with help from above normal rain fall this winter is becoming dryer by the day and was a contributing factor in the rapid flame spread on this incident. Some of the homes threatened by today's fire had dry grass and vegetation dangerously close, luckily they were spared this time around. Please remember to provide your home with a "Defensible Space" in order to increase the odds of surviving a fire like this one. Learn more about defensible space HERE.

Homes within 50' of the blaze with NO defensible space.
The cause of the fire is currently under investigation.

Submitted by: Chuck Palmore, Lakeside Fire Captain

Monday, June 7, 2010

Aurora Drive Structure Fire

Conditions outside soon after knockdown.
Glenview: At 2:39pm on June 7th, Lakeside units were dispatched to a multi-family residential structure fire at the Los Coches Estates Mobile Home Park located at 13217 Aurora Drive. Lakeside's Battalion 1(Laff), Engines 3, 1, 26S and  Medic 3 responded along with El Cajon Engine 7 ,Truck 6 and Cal Fire Engine 3382. As Engine 3 arrived on scene Captain Mark Grow reported a working structure fire with heavy smoke coming from a double-wide mobile home. Grow established Aurora Incident Command(IC). Medic 3 and Engine 1 arrived next and were assigned Fire Attack to go inside the home with hose lines. Engine 3382 was assigned Rapid Intervention Crew(RIC) and Engine 26s was assigned Ventilation.

Engineer Carl Chiodo reports to Captain Darby on interior conditions.
 A quick assessment of the situation resulted in the decision by Grow to pass the IC to Engine 1(Captain Darby) and initiate an aggressive interior attack with his crew to prevent the fire from spreading through the entire structure. Battalion 1 arrived soon thereafter to assume the IC role and Darby was re-assigned to Operations. The aggressive strategy was a success to halt the flame spread and a knockdown was achieved.  Engine 7 and Truck 6 assisted with Fire Attack.

The fire originated in the laundry room, spread to a hallway and into the attic space. Lakeside Fire investigators determined that the cause was a build up of lint in the gas clothes dryer vent. The occupants were not at home at the time of the fire although three family pets were inside and were rescued unharmed. The Red Cross was called to provide assistance for the two adults, two children and the animals who were displaced by the fire. Fire loss has been set at $150,000.

Units from the El Cajon Fire Department and CalFire assisted Lakeside crews.
This house fire is a reminder to avoid leaving your gas appliances running while not at home and to inspect and clean your dryer vent annually. Learn more about Clothes Dryer Fires from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission here.

Submitted By: Captain Chuck Palmore, Lakeside Fire District
Photos By: Engineer Steve Schleif, Capt. Chuck Palmore, Capt. Mark Grow

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Annual Lakeside Optimist Fishing Derby

A perfect day to fish for free with the kids at our own Lindo Lake.

Lindo Lake: Lakeside Engine 1 (Riverview Station) attended the 7th Annual Lakeside Optimist Fishing Derby and Family Fun Day on Saturday June 5. There was a huge turnout of parents and kids at Lindo Lake in Lakeside for this free family event. The lake was stocked with over 1500 pounds of catfish just prior to the derby and fishing poles were supplied to the young anglers.

This young angler poses proudly with her catch.

Other activities included awards, raffle prizes, face painting and more. This event was made possible by the Lakeside Optimist, Barona Band of Mission Indians, El Cajon Ford, Lakeside Bait and Tackle and Anglers Marine. There was even a free B-B-Q hot dog lunch courtesy of the San Diego Rod and Reel Club.

A great day for family fun but not a good day to be a fish.
Wrapping up a day on the lake with a snow cone and a fire truck!

The San Diego Sheriff's Dept. was there along with the Lakeside Fire Dept. to talk to the kids about safety and to share the fire engine and patrol car with them. If you couldn't make it this year you won't want to miss another opportunity to attend this great event next year!

Many happy kids left this year's event with brightly painted faces.

Story and photos submitted by: Carl Chiodo, Engineer Lakeside Fire Protection District

Fire Contained to Mulch Pile in Blossom Valley

Blossom Valley: On Saturday, June 5th at 1:21 PM, the Heartland Communications Center received calls from the 14400 blk of Ranch Trail Dr, in the Blossom Valley area, regarding a possible vegetation fire in the area. Two brush engines, three structural engines, an ALS ambulance, and Battalion Chief were dispatched to the incident. In addition, CalFire started a full response, including aircraft, to the reported fire.

First arriving units included E3 (Lake Jennings Station), E26s (Blossom Valley Station), and CalFire Engine 3382 (Flinn Springs Station). Fortunately the fire was isolated to a mulch pile in the backyard of one of the residences. Crews were able to prevent the fire from spreading to the adjoining wildland area. Lakeside and CalFire crews extinguished and overhauled the fire.

Lakeside and CalFire crews overhaul a large mulch pile fire. Crews were able to keep the fire isolated to the backyard.

Currently the fire is under investigation, but given the warm weather conditions, it is likely that the fire started from spontaneous ignition. Residents with mulch piles need to be extra cautious as these piles are prone to ignite with little warning.

Submitted By: Captain Mark Grow, Lakeside Fire Protection District

Lakeside Firefighters Extinguish Small Vegetation Fire


Lakeside Firefighters were called to the 12900 block of Highway 8 Business just after 4:00 a.m. this morning for a vegetation fire. Lakeside Battalion 1 (Tockstein) directed crews from the Lake Jennings and Blossom Valley fire stations in corralling the small fire. Lakeside E3 and Br26 were assisted by El Cajon E8 and San Diego Sheriff's deputies. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

View Lakeside Incidents and Story Map in a larger map

Submitted by: Captain Scott Culkin, Lakeside Fire

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Riverpark Fire Station Progress

New Station Site at Lakeside Ave. at Channel Rd.

After months of delay, grading has finally begun at the River Park Fire Station site. The contractor is moving quickly to grade the site and build retaining walls so construction on the new station can begin.

If local residents have questions or concerns about the project they can call the office at 619.390.2350 or at www.lakesidefire.org.

We thank the community for their support and ask them to 'pardon our dust'.

Site Grading has Begun.