Two Easy Steps To Saving A Life

As part of CPR and AED Awareness Week, Fairfax County Fire and Rescue would like to remind all residents that Hands-Only CPR can save lives. According to our friends at the American Heart Association, most people who experience cardiac arrest at home, work or in a public location die because they don’t receive immediate CPR from someone on the scene. 

As a bystander, don’t be afraid. Your actions can only help. Immediate CPR can double or even triple a person’s chance of survival. 

Watch the brief video below to learn how two easy steps can help to save a life in the event of an emergency.


Electrical Event Causes Great Falls House Fire

On Wednesday, May 30, at approximately 10:55 a.m., units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue and Loudoun County Fire and Rescue were dispatched for a house fire in the 900 block of Holly Blossom Court in the Great Falls area of Fairfax County.

Units arrived on the scene of a two-story, single family home with significant fire in an attached garage. The fire extended into the main house. Crews quickly used fire hose to extinguish the garage fire. Additional fire hose was advanced into the house to stop the fire from spreading further. A second alarm was requested to bring additional resources to the scene. One occupant was evaluated for a minor injury and declined transportation to a hospital. Three firefighters sustained minor injuries. One was treated on scene and two were transported and released from the hospital.

One occupant was home at the time of the fire. The occupant saw smoke coming from the rear garage door. Upon investigation, a fire was discovered in the garage. Simultaneously, a neighbor saw fire coming from the garage and called 9-1-1. Smoke alarms sounded after the fire was discovered.

Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started in the garage. The cause of the fire was an electrical event involving extension cords and a power strip.

A total of two adults have been displaced as a result of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered and declined. Damages as a result of the fire are estimated to be $149,500.




Have Two Ways Out

It is the middle of the night and you are suddenly awakened by your smoke alarm. You notice some smoke in your bedroom. What do you do next?

The answer is easy: Get Out and Stay Out!

However, before that occurs it is important you develop, and practice, a home fire escape plan! The video below, from our partners in safety at the United States Fire Administration, will help guide you.

In addition, please go to our website and the Family Escape Plan which provides a grid and further guidance on developing a home escape plan.


Smoke Alarm Alerts Occupants To Herndon Townhouse Fire


On Sunday, January 21, at approximately 4:01 p.m., units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue and the Metropolitan Airport Authority Fire and Rescue Department were dispatched for a reported townhouse fire in the 2400 block of Corn Crib Court in the Herndon section of Fairfax County. 

Units arrived on scene to find smoke showing from the second floor window of a middle unit, three-story townhouse. Firefighters discovered a fire in a bedroom on the second floor. Crews quickly contained and extinguished the fire.  

Seven occupants were home at the time of the fire. Occupants were alerted to the fire by a smoke alarm located in the second floor hallway. All occupants safely evacuated the home and called 9-1-1. 

Fire Investigators determined that the fire started in a second floor bedroom. The cause of the fire is currently under investigation.  

Red Cross assistance was requested and accepted. Seven occupants were displaced as a result of the fire. There were no firefighter or civilian injuries reported. 

Damages as a result of the fire are estimated to be $50,000. The fire damage was limited to the second floor.

Improper Disposal Of Fireplace Ashes Cause Of Fairfax Station House Fire


On Sunday, December 31, at approximately 6:06 a.m., units were dispatched for a reported house fire in the 6100 block of Housatonic Court in the Fairfax Station section of Fairfax County.

Units arrived to find a two-story, split-level home and observed fire coming from the first floor and rear deck and extending to the roof. Crews quickly extinguished the bulk of fire from the outside and then entered the home to extinguish the remaining fire.

Several people driving by called 9-1-1. One of the home’s four occupants discovered the fire on the exterior of the home. They all evacuated prior to the smoke alarms sounding and arrival of fire department.

Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started on the rear deck of the home. The cause of the fire was improperly discarded fireplace ashes.

Two adults and two children were displaced as a result of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered and declined. One adult male received a minor injury to his foot while escaping the fire. He declined treatment and transport. There were no other reported injuries to civilians or firefighters.

Damages as a result of the fire are approximately $125,000.

The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department would like to remind all residents to be cautious and keep safety in mind when handling fireplace ashes. Following a few simple safety tips can help keep you and your loved ones safe.

  • Do not discard your ashes into any combustible container such as a paper or plastic bag, a cardboard box, or a plastic trash can.
  • Do not place ash containers on decks, porches, or in garages.
  • Put ashes into a non-combustible metal container with a lid.
  • Pour water into the container to make sure the ashes are cool.
  • Keep your can OUTSIDE the home, away from your fireplace or stove and anything combustible.
  • Teach all family members to be safe with ashes from your fireplace or wood stove.

Signs and Symptoms of Hypothermia and Frostbite

wind chill chartIt is COLD out there! If you need to be out and about in this weather, please dress appropriately and avoid prolonged exposure to the cold. Not dressing appropriately and staying outside too long in these cold temperatures could lead to serious cold related illness and injury such as Hypothermia or Frostbite.

Please take a moment to learn the Signs and Symptoms of Hypothermia and Frostbite from our friends at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Also learn what to do if you, or another person, are exhibiting signs or symptoms of either condition.


A condition in which the body uses up its stored energy and can no longer produce heat. Often occurs after prolonged exposure to cold temperature.

Early symptoms

  • Shivering
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of coordination
  • Confusion and disorientation

Late symptoms

  • No shivering
  • Blue skin
  • Dilated pupils
  • Slowed pulse and breathing
  • Loss of consciousness

First Aid

  • Request immediate medical assistance.
  • Move the victim into a warm room or shelter.
  • Remove wet clothing.
  • Warm the center of their body first—chest, neck, head, and groin—using an electric blanket; or use skin-to-skin contact under loose, dry layers of blankets, clothing, or towels.
  • If conscious, warm beverages may help increase the body temperature. Do not give alcohol.
  • Once temperature has increased keep them dry and wrapped in a warm blanket, including the head and neck.
  • If no pulse, begin CPR.


An injury to the body that is caused by freezing, which most often affects the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or toes.


  • Reduced blood flow to hands and feet
  • Numbness
  • Aching
  • Tingling or stinging
  • Bluish or pale, waxy skin

First Aid

  • Get into a warm room as soon as possible.
  • Unless necessary, do not walk on frostbitten feet or toes. Immerse the affected area in warm (not hot) water, or warm the affected area using body heat. Do not use a heating pad, fireplace, or radiator for warming.
  • Do not massage the frostbitten area; doing so may cause more damage.