The San Diego
Regional Fire Foundation Presents

Command Post: San Diego

A unique look at Fire and Emergency Response in San Diego County: Meet the men and women who keep us safe, and learn more about what you can do to help keep you and your loved ones safe.

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Fire House 101

Additional 2019 Grants $51,000

To celebrate it's 30th birthday, the Foundation awarded an additional $51,000 in grants to local fire agencies for equipment and training.

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Prevention & Preparedness

We are keeping local communities & firefighters COVID-19 safe with $410,000 of equipment grants

We have provided $410,000 in grants to fire agencies to keep San Diegans and firefighters safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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San Diego Spotlight

We are keeping local communities & firefighters COVID-19 safe with $410,000 of equipment grants

We have provided $410,000 in grants to fire agencies to keep San Diegans and firefighters safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Regional Overview

We are keeping local communities & firefighters COVID-19 safe with $410,000 of equipment grants

We have provided $410,000 in grants to fire agencies to keep San Diegans and firefighters safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Command Post: San Diego
CalFire Incidents
National Interagency Fire Center
(National Fire Tracking)
National Incident Information System
(Wildfire Tracking)
Ready San Diego
2-1-1 (San Diego)

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December Fire Foundation Chairman's Letter



We gave nearly $500,000 in grants to San Diego County Fire Agencies so far this year!

We hope you and yours are a little safer this year because of it.

Escondido Deputy Fire Chief Russ Knowles

When Escondido Deputy Fire Chief Russ Knowles, a 25-year firefighting veteran, is asked about the most hazardous incident he’s faced during his career, he doesn’t point to a fire. He points to a single residence. 

“I have never seen a more complex and potentially dangerous situation than the 2010 Escondido Bomb House.”

Read the Chief's story here.


Follow Us!

Welcome Stephanie Donovan to the Fire Foundation Board

The Fire Foundation is pleased to announce that Stephanie Donovan has joined our Board of Directors and will help to provide communications and media outreach support. Stephanie has more than 30 years of media experience as a former local radio and TV news anchor and reporter with 760 KFMB Radio and Cox Communications/San Diego 4, and currently a senior Media Relations manager with San Diego Gas & Electric.
While in broadcasting, Stephanie also taught news writing and production for radio and TV at San Diego Community College. As the producer and host of a weekly TV talk show, she won an Academy of Cable Excellence (ACE) award for a program on crime victims’ rights—the first ACE won by Cox Communications in San Diego.
One of Stephanie’s current media beats at SDGE focuses on promoting what the utility has done and continues to do to improve fire safety and prevention in our region.
“There’s a clear nexus between my work and my volunteer role with the Foundation,” said Donovan. “Over the years, the Foundation and SDGE have worked together on many grants for local fire agencies and key county projects, such as the donation of Automatic Vehicle Locators this summer.”
Stephanie is a graduate of Pomona College. She has been a member of the chamber choir at Ascension Catholic Church in Tierrasanta for 25 years. The group had the honor to sing at evening Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican in 2003.


Let's Spend Our Holidays at Home Instead of in the Hospital!  

The holidays are here and we are ready to decorate. The Consumer Product Safety Division says there are approximately 12,000 injuries involving holiday decorating seen in U.S. emergency rooms each holiday season. Ouch!
In order to keep you from seeing the helpful faces of our firefighters this season anywhere other than at happy holiday activities, we are sharing the National Safety Council’s 12 days of Holiday Safety! We hope these great tips will help you stay safe this season.

(Click to enlarge graphic)




December 5, 4-8 p.m.

Little Italy Tree Lighting
Santa arrives by fire engine!

Little Italy, Piazza Natale,
Corner of India and W. Date Streets, San Diego.

December 6, 2-5 p.m.

Carlsbad Village Faire Holiday 
Santa will be visiting via fire engine again!

More information

December 6, 3-6 p.m.

Santa by the Sea

Meet your Del Mar Fire Department, along with many other festivities.

Camino del Mar and 15th Street, Del Mar.

December 11, 4-8 p.m.
December 12, 10 a.m.-
4 p.m.

Valley Center / Bates Nut Farm Christmas Events
Clearly, Santa loves fire engines! He will be arriving at this event by firetruck!

More information


Why Is This El Ñino So Dangerous?

Heat sensors show that this Year's El Nino is already warmer than that in 1997

Satellite thermal images show that the current El Niño is already warmer than that of 1997, which caused mud slides, coastal flooding, 17 deaths and more than half a billion dollars in damage. 

What Is El Niño?

Every two-to-seven years, an El Niño forms off the equatorial Pacific around Peru and Ecuador bringing unusually warm water. This warmth causes havoc with Southern California weather. For example, during the 1997 El Niño, more than seven inches of rain fell in parts of Orange County in one day, creating flooding and mudslides. Together with several more powerful storms, that El Niño caused 17 deaths and more than a half a billion dollars in damage to California. 

According to NOAA, this El Niño is already as strong, and may be stronger than the 1997 El Niño. Since it continues to intensify, some scientists suggest it might be the strongest ever. For example, water temperatures are 5.4 degrees Fahrenheit above normal here in San Diego, while they were only 5 degrees above average during the strongest El Niño. 

Potential Flooding

While we look forward to increased precipitation to ease our drought, the down side to all this free water is potentially wide-spread flooding. The following links have information on what to do in case of flooding:

Flood Preparations 
During a Flood
After a Flood


$177,000 in Grants Awarded to San Diego County Fire Agencies. 

At our annual awards ceremony on November 19, we presented $177,000 worth of grants to 10 local fire agencies to help them purchase emergency response equipment. The grants included:

  • Alpine: thermal image camera
  • Borrego Springs: personal protective equipment (PPE) for structure fires
  • De Luz: helmet lights, lights to illuminate the emergency scene
  • Julian/Cuyamaca: PPE
  • La Jolla Reservation: PPE, breathing apparatus, fire hose
  • Mount Laguna: firefighter training
  • Pine Valley: hand-held radios for firefighters
  • Rainbow: fire hose, foam, PPE
  • CAL FIRE: mass casualty kits for all rural fire departments
  • San Diego County Fire Authority: Automated External Defribrillators (AEDs)
We've distributed nearly $500,000 in grants to fire departments this year, and more than $5 million since 1989.

“Since its inception, the Fire Foundation has granted more than $5 million for firefighting equipment, ranging from basic needs, such as fire hose, ladders and protective clothing to fire engines and ambulances, automatic electronic defibrillators (AEDs), mass casualty kits and automatic vehicle locators for fire trucks, which have a major regional benefit,” said Fire Foundation Chairman Frank Ault. 

Contributions from San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E), the San Diego Foundation, Grossmont Healthcare District, Anthem Foundation, Southern California Edison and many individuals, including Fire Foundation board members, provided funding for the grants.

See more pictures from our grant ceremony.


SDGE and the Fire Foundation to the Rescue!

San Diego Regional Fire Foundation and SDGE provide a grant to the La Jolla Indian Fire Department for Equipment
La Jolla Reservation Fire Department (La Jolla) receives a grant from SDGE and the Fire Foundation for essential equipment including fire hose, firefighter protective clothing and breathing apparatus. Left to right: Fire Foundation Executive Director Joan Jones, La Jolla Engineer Ernest Sanisya, La Jolla Chief Wesley Ruise, SDGE Senior Media Relations Manager Stephanie Donovan.

La Jolla submitted a grant request to the US Department of Transportation (DOT) to acquire $534,000 of fire and medical/rescue equipment to enhance traffic, fire and first responder safety along Highway 76 which runs through their reservation.  Because this same equipment will improve fire service and safety to the entire region, DOT approved about half of the grant and required the other half to have $51,000 in matching funds.
However, by the time the approved grant went from DOT to the Bureau of Indian Affairs to the California State Transportation Agency to La Jolla it was August of this year. The DOT grant required the matching funds by September 30, 2015. Thus with only six weeks to secure those funds, La Jolla contacted the Fire Foundation. The Foundation contacted SDGE who quickly agreed to provide the matching funds through the Fire Foundation. 
“The La Jolla fire agency has a history of providing quality service for the reservation and the surrounding communities on a day-to-day basis as well as during disasters”, said Dave Geier, Vice President of Electric System Transmission and System Engineering. “We are pleased to help them acquire a grant of this magnitude that will have an immediate positive impact on the region now and in the future.”
The grant will enable La Jolla to acquire a smaller quick attack fire and rescue vehicle, firefighter protective clothing, fire hose, breathing apparatus, rescue ropes, foam, radios for communications and fire nozzles. DOT Secretary Foxx said, “By improving the safety for drivers and their passengers on tribal lands, these important funds will enhance the quality of life for their community.”

La Jolla Needs a Fire Station

The Fire Foundation worked with La Jolla in 2008 after the devastating Poomacha Fire to acquire a full-sized structure fire engine through the McCormick Foundation in Chicago. The next major challenge for La Jolla and the Fire Foundation is to find adequate funding to build a fire station on the reservation. Currently the fire engines are protected under a tent and all other equipment is stored in trailers.  This fire station is critical because the La Jolla reservation is located along Highway 76 in San Diego’s East County, south of Palomar Mountain, in an area considered to be an extreme fire risk zone.   


We wish you, your families, friends, and all fire and emergency services personnel a safe and wonderful holiday season.

Frank Ault
Frank H. Ault
Board Chairman
Joan Jones
Executive Director
Copyright © 2015 All rights reserved.


PH: (619) 814-1352



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San Diego Regional Fire Foundation
A 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization
TEL: (619) 814-1352
2508 Historic Decatur Road Suite 200,
San Diego, California 92106.
FAX: (619)239-1710