Chief's Message

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City of West Sacramento Fire Department

John Heilmann, Fire Chief
West Sacramento Fire Administration
2040 Lake Washington Blvd.
West Sacramento, CA 95691
(916) 617-4600
johnh@cityofwestsacramento.org

Hours: Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

As Fire Chief for the West Sacramento Fire Department, I would like to present a brief but detailed summary of some of the many services the West Sacramento Fire Department provides to the community.

The West Sacramento Fire Department's origin dates back to 1896, with the formation of the Washington (Broderick) Fire Protection District. Ultimately, the Washington Fire Protection District, the Bryte Fire Protection District, and the Westgate Fire Protection District consolidated in 1978 to form the East Yolo Fire Protection District. In 1987, the City of West Sacramento incorporated and became the 444th City of the State of California, assuming the boundaries of the former East Yolo Fire Protection District.

The West Sacramento Fire Department provides a full and complete range of services throughout the city and to the public. Areas where services are provided include, but are not limited to, the following activities and programs:

  • Emergency Medical Services
  • Rescue and Lifesaving activities
  • Fire Suppression and Extinguishment activities
  • Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Response
  • Domestic Terrorism Preparedness
  • Training and Response
  • A complete Hazardous Materials Management, Enforcement, and Response program
  • Fire Prevention
  • Public Education
  • Code Enforcement
  • Non-Emergency Response
  • Community Based Programs

The Department maintains the ranks at 57 uniform employees and one (1) non-sworn employee. Emergency services are provided from five fire stations strategically located throughout the city. The Department responded to 9,019 calls for service in 2016.

Projects

Some of our more significant projects and accomplishments include:

ISO Class 1 Department

ISO stands for Insurance Services Office. This is a group of trained, professional evaluators that evaluate municipal fire protection efforts in communities throughout the United States. Points for everything from training, water supply systems, emergency dispatch capabilities, apparatus, call volume, response times and more are thoroughly assessed and rated. The audits which determine the ratings occur every five years. ISO analyzes the relevant data using the Fire Suppression Rating Schedule (FSRS). The purpose of ISO is to give insurance companies a uniform system on which to base their insurance premiums. By classifying a community’s ability to suppress fires, ISO also helps the community evaluate their public fire protection services. The final rating ranges from Class 1 (superior fire protection) to 10 (minimal fire protection). Historically, very few cities receive the coveted “Class 1” rating. Of the nearly 50,000 rated cities across the United States, less than one half of 1% of cities receive a “Class 1” rating. During its 2016 audit, the City of West Sacramento received a “Class 1” rating. A “Class 1A” was also awarded to the rural area, which is the highest rural rating available. As insurance companies typically utilize the classification to assist in determining premiums, the new classification has the potential for financial savings for homeowners and business owners alike.

Assistance to Firefighters Grant

In 2016, a consortium of regional fire agencies led by the West Sacramento Fire Department was awarded a $1.1 million grant through FEMA’s Assistance to Firefighters (AFG) program. Partner agencies in this effort include the cities of West Sacramento, Davis and Woodland, along with the fire protection districts of Madison, Yolo, Zamora, Esparto, Knight’s Landing, West Plainfield, and Elkhorn, and the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation. Grant funds were used to purchase Self Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA), air compressors, and related equipment that will improve interoperability and firefighter safety throughout the region.

PulsePoint

PulsePoint is a free life-saving mobile application which empowers CPR-trained citizens and off-duty
professionals to provide critical assistance immediately following cardiac arrest. The department worked collaboratively with Yolo Emergency Communications Agency (YECA) and Yolo County Emergency Medical Services Agency (YEMSA) to plan, configure, and implement the program county-wide at no cost to the citizens. The application went live on June 1, 2016.

Training Tower Facility Project

The Fire Department, in cooperation with the Port of West Sacramento, received a Marine Exchange of San Francisco Bay Region Grant to fund a training tower that would serve as an all-risk public safety training facility. The Fire Department and the Port have worked cooperatively to designate an appropriate plot of land on Port property for this training tower. This facility will be a “cutting edge,” multi-story Marine Vessel Training & Exercise Tower that boasts a comprehensive design to replicate a wide array of training exercises. This project was completed in May 2013.

West Valley Regional Fire Training Consortium (WVRFTC)

To assist in scheduling and training delivery, in 2012 the West Valley Regional Fire Training Consortium was created in response to reduced training resource availability and staff reductions to fire training divisions throughout Yolo County. With the UC Davis Fire Department leading the effort to form regional partnerships, the West Sacramento Fire Department became a charter member of the consortium in July of 2012. Soon after, the Woodland and Davis Fire Departments joined the consortium. The Consortium manages and coordinates the development of the annual training calendar; scheduling of all State, OSHA, and Federally-mandated training, as needed; the development and evaluation of measurable standards for specific training evolutions; schedules and coordinates EMS continuing education; and schedules and facilitates all multi-agency training.