Frequently Asked Questions

Can I get a patch from the Central County Fire Department?

The Central County Fire Department does not take requests for patches at this time.


How do I schedule a station visit or community service event?

By calling Fire Department Admin at 650-558-7600


I am having an issue regarding an animal rescue, who should I call?

Peninsula Humane Society at 650-340-8200


Can I dispose of unused medications to the Fire Department?

No , Medications can be dropped off to the disposal box at the Burlingame Police Department at 1111 Trousdale Drive, Burlingame.


Do I need a CO (carbon monoxide detector)?

The California Health & Safety Code requires carbon monoxide detectors be installed in all existing family dwelling units since July 1, 2011 and in all other dwelling units by January 1, 2013.


Do you offer CPR and First Aid Classes?

Yes, see website under Community Outreach / CPR, and or call Fire Administration at 650-558-7600

More info at:


How can I get my extinguisher serviced?

The Central County Fire Department does not service fire extinguishers.  Please find a professional fire extinguisher service company in the Yellow Pages under “Fire Extinguisher”


How do I dispose of an old Fire Extinguisher or other household hazardous waste ( like paint, cleaning chemicals, insecticide, etc.)?

Please call the San Mateo County Household Hazardous Waste Program at (650) 372-6200

More info at :


How do I draw up an escape plan for my home or business?

The four steps include:

  • Draw a floor plan of your home
  • Agree on a meeting place
  • Practice your escape plan
  • Make your exit drill realistic

More info can be found at :


How many smoke detectors should I have and where should they be placed? 

At least one smoke detector on every floor, including the basement, and one in every bedroom.


How often should I check my smoke detectors’ batteries? 

Make sure you change the batteries in your smoke detectors once a year.  An easy way to remember to change your batteries is when you turn your clock back in the fall.  In the meantime, press the button on your smoke detector to make sure it works at least once a month.  If at any time your smoke dectector begins to “chirp” consistently, this is a signal that your battery needs to be change


Does the Central County Fire Department install car seats?

Yes, by appointment only. Appointments can be scheduled by calling Fire Department Admin at 650-558-7600.


Is there a difference between a fire engine and fire truck? 

Yes.  A fire engine has a hose, a water tank, a pump, and a small assortment of ladders.  A fire truck usually does not have a pump, hose, or water tank, but has a tall ladder fixed to the truck and over 100 feet of portable ladders along with additional equipment.


What are your hours of operation?

Fire Stations are always open for service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. The Administrative offices are open from 8:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Thursday, and on Friday 8:00am to Noon.


What are the fees charged by the fire department?

Click here for a list of fees:


Do you have a volunteer or intern program?

Yes, send resumes to Captain Ryan Klarich at


How do I report a broken or leaking fire hydrant?

Contact California Water Service at (650) 558-7800


What is the best type of fire extinguisher for home use?

Look for a multi-purpose extinguisher.  The rating label will have an ABC rating.  This extinguisher can be used on most household fires.


What should I do if I smell smoke, smell a chemical release, or witness a medical emergency?

Call 911


What are some steps I can take to protect my family or property from the ravages of fire?

1. Install smoke detectors inside each bedroom, in the corridor or hallway area serving the bedrooms, and at the top of each stairwell, if your residence is not already so equipped.
2. Regularly test your smoke detector(s) to ensure their proper operability.
3. Install a 2A/10BC portable fire extinguisher to combat small fires involving ordinary combustibles, flammable/combustible liquids, and energized electrical equipment. The preferable location to mount portable fire extinguishers is on a wall, 3.5 to 5 feet above the surface of the floor, near an exit or escape route.
4. Clear combustible vegetation 30 feet to 100 feet away from your residence or to the property line, whichever is closest.
5. Develop and practice an emergency escape plan involving all the occupants of your residence.
6. Ensure that ordinary and/or special fire hazards don’t exist on your property.