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Safety & Education

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Safety starts with individual responsibility. Most accidents can be prevented or significantly minimized by following a few general safety practices. Something as simple as installing a smoke detector or wearing a seat bet, could save a life. But many people still believe that home fires or vehicle accidents won't happen to them. Unfortunately, the Chula Vista Fire Department responds to preventable accidents every day and knows how a drowning, fire or accident can devastate a family.

The information provided here will give residents and businesses useful tips on how to prevent the common causes of fire, injuries and accidents in your home. Please take a few minutes to go over this safety information and share it with family members. 

Before / During / After a Fire

Before:  Create and Practice a Fire Escape Plan

In the event of a fire, remember that every second counts, so you and your family must always be prepared. Escape plans help you get out of your home quickly.

Twice each year, practice your home fire escape plan.  Some tips to consider when preparing this plan include:

  • Find two ways to get out of each room.
  • If the primary way is blocked by fire or smoke, you will need a second way out. A secondary route might be a window onto a neighboring roof or a collapsible ladder for escape from upper story windows.
  • Only purchase collapsible ladders evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratory (UL).
  • Make sure that windows are not stuck, screens can be taken out quickly, and that security bars can be properly opened.
  • Practice feeling your way out of the house in the dark or with your eyes closed.
  • Windows and doors with security bars must have quick release devices to allow them to be opened immediately in an emergency. Make sure everyone in the family understands and practices how to properly operate and open locked or barred doors and windows.
  • Teach children not to hide from firefighters.
During a Fire:
  • Crawl low under any smoke to your exit - heavy smoke and poisonous gases collect first along the ceiling.
  • When the smoke alarm sounds, get out fast. You may have only seconds to escape safely.
  • If there is smoke blocking your door or first way out, use your second way out.
  • Smoke is toxic. If you must escape through smoke, get low and go under the smoke to your way out.
  • Before opening a door, feel the doorknob and door. If either is hot, leave the door closed and use your second way out.
  • If there is smoke coming around the door, leave the door closed and use your second way out.
  • If you open a door, open it slowly. Be ready to shut it quickly if heavy smoke or fire is present.
  • If you can’t get to someone needing assistance, leave the home and call 9-1-1 or the fire department. Tell the emergency operator where the person is located.
  • If pets are trapped inside your home, tell firefighters right away.
  • If you can’t get out, close the door and cover vents and cracks around doors with cloth or tape to keep smoke out.  Call 9-1-1 or your fire department. Say where you are and signal for help at the window with a light-colored cloth or a flashlight.
  • If your clothes catch fire, stop, drop, and roll – stop immediately, drop to the ground, and cover your face with your hands.  Roll over and over or back and forth until the fire is out.  If you or someone else cannot stop, drop, and roll, smother the flames with a blanket or towel.  Use cool water to treat the burn immediately for 3 to 5 minutes.  Cover with a clean, dry cloth.  Get medical help right away by calling 9-1-1 or the fire department.

After a Fire:  Recovering from a fire can be a physically and mentally draining process.  When fire strikes, lives are suddenly turned around.  Often, the hardest part is knowing where to begin and who to contact.  The following checklist serves as a quick reference and guide for you to follow after a fire strikes.

  • Contact your local disaster relief service, such as The Red Cross, if you need temporary housing, food and medicines.
  • If you are insured, contact your insurance company for detailed instructions on protecting the property, conducting inventory and contacting fire damage restoration companies.  If you are not insured, try contacting private organizations for aid and assistance.
  • Check with the fire department to make sure your residence is safe to enter. Be watchful of any structural damage caused by the fire.
  • The fire department should see that utilities are either safe to use or are disconnected before they leave the site.  DO NOT attempt to reconnect utilities yourself.
  • Conduct an inventory of damaged property and items.  Do not throw away any damaged goods until after an inventory is made.
  • Try to locate valuable documents and records.  Refer to information on contacts and the replacement process inside this brochure.
  • If you leave your home, contact the local police department to let them know the site will be unoccupied.
  • Begin saving receipts for any money you spend related to fire loss.  The receipts may be needed later by the insurance company and for verifying losses claimed on income tax.
  • Notify your mortgage company of the fire.
  • Check with an accountant or the Internal Revenue Service about special benefits for people recovering from fire loss.

CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation)

About 92 percent of sudden cardiac arrest victims die before reaching the hospital, but statistics prove that if more people knew CPR, more lives could be saved. Immediate CPR can double, or even triple, a victim’s chance of survival. The Chula Vista Fire Department works closely with the Chula Vista Firefighter's Foundation (CVFF)  to offer CPR courses to the public.  Based on the needs of the prospective student, two different CPR courses are available.  Please read each respective course description (below) and contact the CVFF with questions or a course request at

Heartsaver First Aid CPR/AED (Automated External Defibrillator)

Heartsaver First Aid CPR/AED is a classroom, video-based, instructor-led course that teaches students critical skills needed to respond to and manage a first aid, choking, or sudden cardiac arrest emergency in the first few minutes until emergency medical services (EMS) arrives. Students learn skills such as how to treat bleeding, sprains, broken bones, shock, and other first aid emergencies. This course also teaches adult CPR and AED use.

This course is for anyone with limited or no medical training who needs a course completion card in first aid, CPR, and AED used to meet job, regulatory, or other requirements.

Basic Life Support (BLS) for Healthcare Providers Classroom Course:

The Basic Life Support (BLS) for Healthcare Providers Classroom Course is designed to provide a wide variety of healthcare professionals the ability to recognize several life-threatening emergencies, provide CPR, use an AED, and relieve choking in a safe, timely, and effective manner.

This course is for healthcare professionals who need to know how to perform CPR, as well as other lifesaving skills, in a wide variety of in-hospital and out-of-hospital settings.

Water & Pool Safety

Drowning is the leading cause of accidental death for children under the age of five. Infants and toddlers can drown quickly and silently, in a matter of seconds.  Drowning is preventable. The City of Chula Vista's Fire and Recreation Departments have launched, with funding provided by the Chula Vista Firefighter's Foundation, an educational campaign that can help you protect your child. Chula Vista WARN----Water Awareness in Residential Neighborhoods----reaches communities with important water safety information that could save the life of a child you know and love.


For information on Water Safety Events, visit our Recreation Department Aquatics page here.  More information on the Water & Pool Safety program can also be found here.


Pulse Point

Pulse PointThe City of Chula Vista has teamed with San Diego County to offer the free PulsePoint mobile app that alerts CPR-trained bystanders if someone nearby is having a sudden cardiac arrest that may require CPR.

The app is activated by one of the five public safety communications centers in the county at the same moment that fire and EMS resources are dispatched to the scene.

Sudden Cardiac Arrest is a leading cause of death in the United States, accounting for an estimated 325,000 deaths each year -- nearly 1,000 people a day or one person every two minutes. It can happen to anyone at any time. Many victims appear healthy with no known heart disease or other risk factors.

Survival rates nationally for sudden cardiac arrest are less than 8%. Delivery of CPR is life-saving first aid, and can sustain life until paramedics arrive by helping to maintain vital blood flow to the heart and brain. But it is estimated that only about a third of sudden cardiac arrest victims receive bystander CPR.

Without oxygen-rich blood, permanent brain damage or death can occur in less than 8 minutes. After 10 minutes there is little chance of successful resuscitation. Even in modern urban settings the response times for professional rescuers commonly approach these time frames. The American Heart Association estimates that effective bystander CPR, provided immediately after sudden cardiac arrest, can double or triple a person’s chance of survival.

The PulsePoint app is free.

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From the agency list, find and follow Chula Vista Fire or any county fire department of your choice.  Go to settings and select the “CPR” notification box


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