Prevention & Preparedness
Regional Overview
San Diego Spotlight

We’re helping the County and CalFire map San Diego’s back country, because that’s where our wildfires start

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San Diego Firefighters need every second they can get to help save your loved one.

There are three critical elements related to the effectiveness of firefighters in responding to a medical or fire emergency:

  1. Having the needed training
  2. Having all the appropriate equipment
  3. Getting to the scene as rapidly as possible

+ Mobile Data Computers
Time (Lives) Saved

The Fire Foundation, in partnership with the San Diego County Fire Authority and Cal Fire, has done a great job with the first two elements, but there are still serious issues with response times in many rural areas.

All of our county’s urban fire engines and rescue vehicles are equipped with mobile data computers (MDCs). These MDCs show the route to the emergency, details of each apartment complex, water hydrants, etc. Unfortunately, this is not the case in rural San Diego County. County Assessor’s maps are only available to dispatchers, which do not show truck trails, dirt roads, the distance from a house to the address marker, or any numerical irregularities.

The Fire Foundation is teaming with the County Fire Authority and Cal Fire to do a two-year mapping and MDC project for 42 rural fire stations with 70 fire engines and rescue vehicles. This program will improve response times using new mapping standards and technology.

Project Goals: In 2016, of the 5,000 emergency calls in rural San Diego County, 41% did not meet the target response time of 10 minutes or less. The average response time for those 41% was 16 ½ minutes. If the number of calls meeting the 10 minute target went from 59% to 75% it would be a 27% improvement.

Our firefighters need every advantage 

San Diego County’s rural fire engines do not have mobile data computers (MDCs) which provide maps, water sources and other vital information to emergency vehicles responding to an incident. In addition, County maps in our rural areas are very incomplete often lacking dirt roads, truck trails, and addresses frequently are not in a sequential order. The MDCs and mapping will result in reduced response times saving lives and property.

The Fire Foundation in partnership with the County Fire Authority and Cal Fire are undertaking a $620,000 project to place MDCs in about 100 fire engines and to have detailed maps prepared of all rural areas of the County.

The County is putting about $190,000 into the project, SDG&E has donated $130,000 and the Fire Foundation will fund $300,000. We have already raised $253,000 from our friends and family campaign late last year and from other donors.

The Fire Foundation is actively working on raising the last $47,000 for this project. If you are able to help, please use the “Donate” button below