Frequently Asked Questions

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  • Why do I have to dial 911? Can't I call the fire station direct and save time?

    The 911 emergency system is designed to save valuable seconds. When you dial 911, the system routes the police or fire unit that is closest to your home. Fire stations are not properly equipped to take emergency calls, and calling the station directly actually wastes response time.

    Read more on when to call 911. 

  • How long does it take a fire engine to get to a fire or medical emergency after 911 has been called?

    It takes between 3-5 minutes for engines to arrive on scene after a 9-1-1 call has been placed.

  • What can I do to protect my home from wildland fires?

    To protect your home from wildfires, you must create a safety zone or firebreak by reducing the amount of dead or dying fuel (vegetation) around your home. This does not necessarily mean all vegetation should be removed. In fact, having fire-resistant plants and trees around your home that are properly trimmed and well-watered can serve as a firebreak.

    For additional information, contact Monrovia Fire & Rescue's Brush line at (626) 256-8109 or visit our Brush Clearance page. You can also visit

  • Does Monrovia Fire & Rescue provide fire station tours?

    We welcome our local schools, groups, families, etc. to visit and learn about our facilities, as well as meet our fire personnel. Tours are by appointment only and may be scheduled with our Administrative Office at (626) 256-8181.
  • Where can I obtain a medical record (EMS) and/or fire incident report?

    If you are requesting a medical record (EMS) on an individual's behalf (i.e., an attorney's office, insurance company, etc.), you must provide a signed waiver in order for medical records to be released. If you are requesting a medical (EMS) record for yourself and/or a fire incident report, a Request for Public Records must be submitted with the City Clerk's Office (located in City Hall) or Fire Station 101.
  • Where can I get first aid classes?

    The American Red Cross regularly offers classes in first aid. You can contact the Arcadia Chapter at (626) 447-2193.
  • Where can I take CPR classes?

    You can find CPR classes by calling Methodist Hospital of Southern California's Education Department at (626) 574-3414; the American Red Cross at (626) 447-2193, or the American Heart Association at (800) 432-7852 or (323) 727-2940.
  • What do firefighters do when they are not on calls fighting fires?

    Training takes up a good deal of their time when they are not on call. Firefighters are required to have at least 20 hours of emergency-related training each month. Firefighters also participate in fire safety inspections and drive the community to become familiar with the area to reduce response time during incidents. Firefighters must also check and maintain their equipment and clean and maintain their stations.
  • When there is only a small fire, why do so many fire engines respond?

    The standard response to a residential structure fire includes 2 Monrovia engine companies, 1 mutual-aid company, 1 paramedic unit and 1 Battalion Chief. If these units are not needed, they are released upon arrival. The main goal of Monrovia Fire & Rescue is to protect lives and property and this level of response is needed to accomplish this goal.
  • How do I go about drawing up an escape plan for my home/business?

    The four basic steps to draw up an escape plan for your home include: Draw a floor-plan of your home; agree on a meeting place; practice your escape plan; and make your exit drill realistic.

    You may also refer to Survive Alive for information on how to survive alive, tour the survival house, fire and life safety information, and information for children and teachers.
  • A member of my family is disabled. What should he/she do during a fire?

    Assure that you have a well-defined escape plan. Make sure that people who are confined to a wheelchair have immediate access to their wheelchair when an emergency occurs. Call the Police Department to make sure the person's special needs are in the 911 dispatch system.
  • What is the best thing to do for a burn?

    Cool a burn with water. Do not use ointments, butter or other substances. For minor burns contact a physician. For serious burns, dial 911 immediately.
  • When I go on vacation, should I let the Fire Department know?

    Contact the Police Department when leaving for vacation. Leave an emergency number with your neighbors where you can be contacted in case the fire department must respond to an incident at your home. Also, leave a key with a responsible party and notify Monrovia Fire & Rescue in the event access to your home is necessary.
  • What kind of fire extinguisher should I buy?

    Homeowners should buy an extinguisher that can handle class A-B-C fires. They should be designed to extinguish fires that usually occur in homes; including wood, paper, flammable liquids and electrical fires.
  • Do I need to put a smoke detector in every room? How many do I need?

    Smoke detectors should be placed outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement. On floors without bedrooms, detectors should be installed in or near living areas such as dens, living rooms, or family rooms. For more information, email:

  • What should I do during an earthquake?

    If you are indoors, stay there. Get under a desk or table, or crouch down along an inside wall or hallway. If you are outdoors, get into an open area away from trees, buildings, walls or power lines. If you are driving, pull your car to the side of the road and stop. Avoid overpasses or power lines. Remain inside until shaking is over. If you are in a high-rise building, stay away from windows and outside walls. Get under a table. Do not use elevators.