Keeping Your Little Ghouls And Goblins Safe

Halloween can be a scary time as it relates to fire safety. Decorations and candles in particular can turn your Halloween into a horrifying experience if care is not taken.

We want to make sure your little ghouls and goblins have a fun time safely. Please take a moment to view the below picto-graph, from our partners in safety at the National Fire Protection Association, for some helpful tips to keep this Halloween a safe one for you and your loved ones.

Halloween fire safety tips

Accessible version here

Halloween by the numbers*

  • From 2009-2013, decorations were the item first ignited in an estimated average of 860 reported home structure fires per year.
  • Nearly half of decoration fires in homes occurred because the decorations were too close to a heat source.
  • These fires caused an estimated average of one civilian death, 41 civilian injuries and $13 million in direct property damage per year.
  • Forty-one percent of these incidents were started by candles; one-fifth began in the living room, family room, or den.

*From the NFPA

Citizen Recognition

By: Captain Mervin Barrera
Fire Station 30, Merrifield, C-Shift

Recently, the personnel at Fire Station 30, Merrifield, C-Shift had the pleasure of honoring Mr. Gary Seegers with a Citizen Recognition award for his actions on September 9, 2016.

Mr. Seegers is a Maintenance Tech III at the Amberleigh Apartments off of Anderson Drive in the Merrifield area of Fairfax County. On Friday September 9, 2016 there was an apartment fire in one of the buildings on site. An individual called the leasing office and informed staff that smoke was filling up the building. Mr. Seegers ran to the building along with others and instead of wasting precious time knocking on each door to get the residents out, as the hallway was filling up with smoke, he quickly pulled the fire alarm to alert all of the residents.

Due to his quick thinking and rapid actions all of the residents got out of the building and no injuries were reported. The crew from Fire Station 30 were able to recognize him with a Citizen Recognition award in front of his peers and present Mr. Gary Seegers with a plaque and letter for a job well done.

Thank you Mr. Gary Seegers!

“Horse Play” Allowed In This Class

Earlier this week, members of Fairfax County Fire and Rescue, Fairfax County government, and other area fire and rescue departments participated in a unique educational program. The all day workshop, “Horse Sense for Leaders,” is a professional development initiative that incorporates a contemporary approach to building a relationship between horse and human – one that focuses on the interpersonal skills and practices necessary to establish relationships based on mutual trust and respect.

A highlight of the workshop involves a horseman/lecturer who takes a horse he has never met, and quickly develops a rapport and willing partnership with the horse rather than one of submission and control. This relationship-building method then serves as the base for the workshop. In a couple of the photos below you will notice how, later in the session, the horse sticks right by the horseman/lecturer even though he is free to roam in his area.

Participants raved about the class and knowledge gained.

Great SouthEast ShakeOut Earthquake Drill

Earthquake Drill

Don’t think an earthquake can happen here?! Obviously, you were not around for the magnitude 5.8 earthquake that occurred on August 23, 2011 that impacted the Commonwealth of Virginia and was felt here in Fairfax County and across the Washington Metro Area.

In light of that, Virginia is once again participating in the Great SouthEast ShakeOut, an earthquake drill set for TOMORROW, October 20th, at 10:20 AM. At that time, residents are asked to simulate that there is an earthquake taking place and take immediate protective measures: Drop, Cover, and Hold On! Register now and participate in this year’s drill.

Find additional information on the Great SouthEast ShakeOut and additional drill resources at the SouthEast ShakeOut  home page, or Fairfax County’s Emergency Information Blog.

Great SouthEast ShakeOut


Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department is pleased to announce the following uniformed and civilian promotions.

The following uniformed personnel have been promoted to Technician – EMS:fire department collar pins

• Allen, Sean P.
• Carney, Shawn K.
• Chilva, Bradley M.
• Corl, Nathaniel T.
• Gangler, Nathan R.
• Garcia, Michael A.
• Reed, Justin G.
• Roach, Justin T.

The following individual has achieved a Proficiency Designation as a Master Technician – EMS:

• Buttenshaw, Jason M.

The following non-uniformed individual has been promoted to IT Program Manager I:

• Dennis, Steven M.

Congratulations to all on their promotions! Best wishes and stay safe in your new assignments.

Best Open House

Saturday was a fantastic day in all Fairfax County Fire and Rescue fire stations as we held our annual Open House event. Many County residents stopped by their local fire station to meet the firefighters that serve them, get an up close look at the fire trucks and equipment, learn about fire safety, and just generally have a fun time!

As part of Open House, there is a competition among all the fire stations to win the “Best Open House” award. The award is given to a fire station in each of our seven battalions that best highlights this years Fire Prevention Week Theme along with being creative and making sure all visitors had a really good time.

Each Battalion Chief was responsible for judging the fire stations in their battalion. The competition was tough as each station did a fantastic job putting on a great open house for those we serve. However, one station in each battalion had to win and here are the stations that won:

Battalion One: Fire Station 39 – North Point

Open house winners

Battalion Two: Fire Station 42 – Wolf Trap

open house winners

Battalion Three: Fire Station 15 – Chantilly

open house winners

Battalion Four: Fire Station 18 – Jefferson

open house winners

Battalion Five: Fire Station 22 – Springfield

open house winners

Battalion Six: Fire Station 11 – Penn Daw

open house winners

Battalion Seven: Fire Station 14 – Burke

open house winners

Congratulations to all of our Open House Winners!

Fairfax County Public Safety Recognizes Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Fairfax County public safety is looking a bit more colorful this October. For the entire month, members of Fairfax County Police Department, Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department, Fairfax County Sheriff’s Office, Office of Emergency Management, and the Department of Public Safety Communications are wearing pink shirts to show support for those battling cancer. The shirts are worn as a symbol of support and recognition for all those who have been touched by breast cancer. 

At the Board of Supervisors meeting on October 18, all five public safety agencies will join Supervisor Hudgens in issuing a proclamation recognizing October as Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Additionally, the Police Department has brought back its pink cruiser which serves as a moving tribute to breast cancer victims, survivors, their families, friends, and caregivers. In 2014, the Fairfax County Police Foundation paid to paint the car pink and volunteers applied police markings. FCPD encourages anyone with a connection to breast cancer to sign the cruiser. All are invited to read and reflect on the remembrances and tributes written on the vehicle. If you see the cruiser around town, ask an attending FCPD member if you can add a name or message to the cruiser.