Contra Costa County Fire Protection District Public Education Unit

pubedsta11The Public Education Unit of Contra Costa County Fire Protection District consists of one part-time Fire Prevention Specialist who conducts public education programs when not assigned to the Exterior Hazard Control Division during the months of May through October.

Despite a long-term downward trend, the United States continues to have one of the highest fire death rates per capita in the world. Part of the reason for this is the lack of adequate public fire education resources nationwide. It is a proven fact that educating the public in matters of fire and life safety reduces casualties.

Simply stated, the goal of our Public Education Unit is that all of our citizens, from preschoolers to senior citizens, will learn the proper action to take in a sudden fire or life emergency. We have a number of programs and tools to accomplish this goal. Our vision is a fire district where no one suffers a fire injury or death due to a lack of knowledge or preparation.

To contact the Public Education Unit, please call 925.941.3327. Brochures and printed information are available year-round. Public Education presentations may be scheduled from October through April.

List below are the Contra Costa County Fire Protection District fire and life safety programs. Public education presentations are conducted October through April. If you'd like to request a Public Education Presentation, click here. If you'd like to request Public Education materials to pass out to your group, please click here.

  • Basic Home Safety
  • Be Cool
  • CERT
  • Emergency Preparedness
  • Fire Extinguisher Training
  • Home Inspection
  • "Hug-A-Bear" Program
  • Juvenile Firesetter Education
  • Mobile Homes
  • On The Job
  • Parents of Pre-Schoolers
  • Safety Fairs
  • Senior Citizens
  • Smoke Alarm/Carbon Monoxide Detector Installation

Basic Home Fire Safety

Home fires strike suddenly without warning, leaving residents with a matter of minutes to escape. What can you do to protect your family? This program fits well into homeowners association groups, civic groups, and any gathering that wants to learn how to make their home safer from fire disaster.

Be Cool About Fire Safety

A 35-40 minute program aimed at Brownies, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Cubs, and Elementary After School programs. This is a fun program that teaches fire safety behaviors to smaller groups of kids. The "House-A-Fire" teaching tool is used to teach the fire triangle, and the "Be Cool" video is shown. A brief quiz follows and prizes are given for correct answers.

CERT

Community Emergency Response Team training teaches neighbors to help neighbors in the event of disaster or extreme emergency. In this six-week training course, the students will learn about helping others in a major disaster, suppressing small fires, light search and rescue techniques, disaster psychology, applying CERT principles to a suspected terrorist incident, triage, and many other response techniques.

Visit the Contra Costa CERT web site, and contact your local community CERT coordinator to enroll.

Emergency Preparedness Program

If the big quake hit tomorrow, do you have adequate supplies to sustain your family for at least 72 hours? In this 45-minute program, your group will learn how to stock a home emergency kit, and how to react in a significant earthquake. What can you do ahead of time to ensure the quickest re-connection with your family? This program will help you to be prepared for a major disaster. www.ready.gov

Fire Extinguisher Training

Your workplace has fire extinguishers available for sudden fire emergencies, but do your employees know how to use them? Do they know when using an extinguisher is appropriate and when it isn't? The proper use of a fire extinguisher could save lives and property. Your facility can schedule either a hands-on program (with live pan fire) or classroom training only. There is a fee for conducting the live pan fire training. Please contact the Public Education Division at 925.941.3327 for more information on this program or click here to request the program.

Home Inspection For Fire Hazards

Is that extension cord a fire hazard? How many smoke alarms are enough? What should I do in a cooking fire? We will come to your home and advise you of any fire hazards in your living room, kitchen and any other room you want inspected. We will also advise the best escape route for your floor plan and help you learn how to use your home fire extinguisher.

"Hug-A-Bear" Program

What is a "Hug-A-Bear" and are they effective? Several years ago, the fire service and various law enforcement agencies discovered that providing teddy bears to injured and traumatized children at an incident scene had a profound calming effect on the child. Contra Costa County Fire Protection District implemented the "Hug-A-Bear" program and it continues to this day. The teddy bears are provided solely by donations to our fire district. Two teddy bears are carried on each engine and the firefighter gives a bear to the child on scene. This is done on accident scenes, child medical calls, and even calls where the child may not be the focus, but grandma is ill or a family member is injured. The teddy bears are a cuddly focal point for a child that may be upset during a traumatic event.

The fire district is not accepting donations of teddy bears at this time due to a surplus of donated bears.

Juvenile Firesetter Education

Nationally, over 50% of all arson arrests are youth under the age of eighteen. Addressing this behavior in juveniles can help prevent injuries and property loss and is believed to reduce the number of adult arsonists in our community.

It is normal for a child to be curious about fire. Children want to learn about the world around them. Because your child is curious about fire does not mean there is something wrong with him/her. However, when the interest becomes a dangerous behavior such as unsupervised experimentation with fire, intervention is essential. If you suspect that your child is lighting fires, playing with matches, lighters, fireworks or has had even one fire experimentation incident, you need to take action. Ignoring the problem won't make it go away. By addressing your child's fire play early, you can take a positive step in insuring that your child will not be included as a statistic.

Call the Public Education Unit at 925.941.3327 or click here to request juvenile firesetter educational materials.

Mobile Home Fire Safety

Mobile homeowners associations and clubs can help their residents become aware of the fire hazards unique to their situations. Mobile home living is popular in our fire district, and a preferred, relaxing lifestyle for many. In a sudden fire emergency however, the escape time may be even shorter. What can mobile home residents do to increase their chances of getting out alive? We will come to your next meeting with an interesting video and fire safety tips.

Fire Safety On The Job

Whether you work in an office, factory, or another type of workplace, fires may occur at anytime. Learn what you can do to increase the chances of you and your co-workers escaping unharmed. What kind of hazards are to be found in your workplace? We will come to your place of business and prepare your employees.

Preschooler Parents Fire Safety Tips

As parents of toddlers, you face special considerations regarding preventing fires and burns in your home. What hazards can you look for that pose special dangers for your baby or toddler? Why are pre-schoolers at high risk for clothing ignition and what can you as a parent do to prevent it? This program fits well into moms' clubs, church groups, pre-schools and day cares that have parent meetings.

Safety Fairs

Contact the Public Education Unit at 925.941.3327 or click here to request fire and life safety brochures to distribute at your safety fair.

Senior Citizen Fire Safety

Seniors are at significantly higher risk of dying in a home fire than the rest of the U.S. population. What can seniors do to reduce this risk and protect their home? This program is utilized in assisted living homes, senior apartment complexes, city senior centers, and senior homeowner's associations.

Smoke Alarm and Carbon Monoxide Detector Installation and Give Away Program

Smoke alarms save lives! The Public Education Unit provides free smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors with free installation for senior citizens over 60 years old or disabled citizens of any age who own their own home. If you do not have a working smoke alarm or carbon monoxide detector, or you have a smoke alarm over 10 years old, contact the Public Education Unit to arrange an appointment. For homeowners who are not seniors or disabled, we can come to your home to advise the best location for your smoke alarm or carbon monoxide detector.

Please fill out the Smoke Alarm Request Form

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