The San José Fire Department (SJFD) provides fire protection, rescue and emergency medical services to the city of San José, California.
The San José Fire Department protects the third largest city in California (after Los Angeles and San Diego) and the tenth largest city in the nation.
The department’s jurisdiction covers San José incorporated city limits and unincorporated areas of the County of Santa Clara totaling approximately 200 square miles and one million residents.
We are the 676 men and women of the San José Fire Department who serve our community by protecting life, property and the environment through emergency response and prevention.
Over 85,000 times last year, we responded to our community’s panicked 911 calls for help – including structure fires, vehicle fires, vegetation fires, vehicle accidents and extrications, aircraft emergencies, high and low angle rescues, hazardous materials releases, highrise incidents, USAR rescues, medical emergencies and much more.
Our community includes innumerable residences, critical transportation infrastructure, two airports, seven major hospitals, three regional super malls, 516 highrises, and the SAP center to name just a few critical operations we protect.
San Jose Fire Fighters train daily to be able to respond 24-hours a day, 365-days a year, providing comprehensive life safety services to a million residents and visitors over 200 square miles and throughout the state through mutual aid. Since 1854, our members have served tirelessly – all sacrificing their health and well being in some form or another, and fifteen having paid the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty. Our work touches the lives of tens of thousands every year, often as the critical last line of defense when all other safety standards, equipment, protections, laws and social programs have failed.
On some occasions, members of the public pause to preserve a glimpse into what we do every day to keep them and their families safe.
Every few years, the Mayor, Councilmembers, State Assembly members and other public leaders come to San José to put on turnouts, wear a SCBA and get a flavor of what it means to be a San Jose Fire Fighter.
The investment of their time helps these elected officials make better-informed public policy decisions related to the management of emergency services in the city, making San José safer for its residents.
Nothing else gives elected officials and community leaders a taste of the fire service like experiencing Fire Ops 101. They experience the smoke, the sweat, the adrenaline rush and the physical stress and strain that San Jose Fire Fighters experience daily on the job, all while being exposed to the complex issues of the fire service affecting San José, like staffing, adequate equipment, and presumptive health.
Spending a hands-on day as a first responder is one of the most effective ways for elected officials and community leaders to learn first-hand about our job.