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PRESS RELEASE - MARIN HEADLANDS TUNNEL CLOSURE
April is National Safe Digging Month and Pacific Gas and Electric Company and the Southern Marin Fire District urges all Californians to help stop dig-ins by making the free call to 811 at least two working days ahead of digging projects big and small.
Dig-ins cause damage to underground gas, electric, telecommunications and other infrastructure, which is one of the most serious threats to public safety. In 2015 alone, there were more than 1,600 dig-ins throughout PG&E’s service area.
The 811 one-call service is free, and it’s a requirement of California digging laws. Calling 811 ahead of projects can prevent tragedies like the 2015 third party transmission pipeline strikes that led to fatalities, injuries and property damage in Fresno and Bakersfield.
A call to 811 is the best safeguard and the first line of defense to preventing dig-ins. Callers are connected to their local 811 center that notifies the appropriate utility of their intent to dig. That utility operator sends a specially trained and qualified technician to the digging site to mark the approximate locations of underground lines with flags or spray paint.
UPDATED: August 31, 2016
The Southern Marin Fire District (SMFD) received official confirmation that SMFD earned a new PPC from ISO and have been re-rated to a Class 1/1X, or more simply stated, a Class 1 Department.
Last year, ISO conducted a re-evaluation of Southern Marin Fire. Prior to this re-evaluation, SMFD was rated a PPC Class 3 for the District and a PPC Class 5 for the City of Sausalito. The re-evaluation earned SMFD a Class Rating of 2/2X.
After receiving the new PPC of 2/2X, Fire Chief Tubbs began to analyze the report, scoring and information and found several anomalies in the report. Chief Tubbs requested a meeting with ISO to understand these anomalies. As a result of this meeting with ISO, it was discovered that SMFD received an incorrect credit for current daily minimum staffing levels. The District’s ISO representative re-calculated the score and submitted an updated application. As a result, the District received a new classification, achieving a Class 1 rating for the Southern Marin Fire District including the City of Sausalito.
The Marin IJ published at article on Saturday, February 21, 2016 titled, “Lawsuit says fire district owes OT”.
In response to this article the Fire District releases the following statement.
The District is confident that this matter will be resolved in a fair and reasonable manner for all parties, including the community. It was determined last April that underpayments of past overtime were inadvertently and incorrectly calculated, according to Federal law. Both the district and the Firefighters are working collaboratively to correct the error. We anticipate that this matter will be resolved quickly and will not result in litigation.
The community can be assured that they will continue to receive the highest quality services from the Fire District and its employees.
UPDATE FROM KATE: Seminary Interchange Improvements Soon To Be Constructed
What’s Happening at the Seminary Drive Interchange?
Last winter, I let you know about planned improvements coming to the Seminary Drive interchange. Here’s a recap of these improvements and a word about the construction soon to be underway.
The Seminary interchange project includes the intersection for the northbound (Seminary Drive) off ramp to Redwood Highway Frontage Road and the northbound on ramp to Highway 101. Accident history at this location necessitated these improvements to give drivers better direction about how to proceed through the intersection safely.
Climate forecasters are predicting this winter’s El Niño to be among the largest on record. However, what that means for the Southern Marin area is unknown.
National Weather Service forecasters now say we are very likely to see normal winter rainfall, and a strong possibility of above-average rain. El Niño is not likely to end our drought.
Given Southern Marin’s history of severe weather events and damage, many residents are understandably concerned about what this winter holds. The Southern Marin fire District and our Partners are working closely together and are making these resources available to help residents protect themselves and their loved ones.
Information is available at this web page on our site: http://www.smfd.org/services/flooding-and-winter-storm-resources
Valley Fire Fundraiser
Like many in our community we have been moved by what we are seeing happen to our fellow Californians in the Valley Fire. Though we are out on the front lines battling these fires we return home feeling there is so much more that needs to be done and we believe we can collectively help.
The Southern Marin Fire Protection District is teaming up with our community to provide aid to the families in need in the area of the Valley Fire. Several agencies and private citizens have lent their support to people who have suffered losses due to the devastating fire. An area of tremendous need is with regards to pets and pet owners.
The Southern Marin Fire Protection District is accepting donations of ALL PET RELATED ITEMS. Food/bowls, litter/litter boxes, kennels, beds, leashes, collars, over the counter flea and tick medications and anything else you can think of that will be helpful to a pet/pet owner. There has been a massive outpouring of donations to people in the affected area. We want to make sure that the pets are taken care of too.
The Southern Marin Fire Protection District recently responded to the Grand Jury Report - The Need for Labor Negotiation Transparency - Part II. Please click on the links below to access the Districts's official response.
Letter to Judge D'Opal
SMFD Grand Jury Response
SACRAMENTO – Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today issued a proclamation declaring September 2015 as “National Preparedness Month” in the State of California.
A third group of Southern Marin Firefighters have been deployed to battle wildland fires in California. Deploying with a Strike Team of other agencies from Southern Marin, the group will likley be deployed for two weeks while fighting fires in the MAD River complex Fire.
The previous two deployed crews have returned and are back serving the Southern Marin Community.
The Insurance Services Office (ISO) is the organization that evaluates fire protection in communities throughout the United States, providing a Fire Protection Class Rating (PPC) for each community in which building and property insurance premiums are based upon.
Southern Marin Fire District was last rated in 2000 and received a PPC rating of 3. The City of Sausalito was a PPC 5 at their last re-rate in 2003. The high...est PPC rating is Class 1, and the worst is Class 10. Since these previous re-rates the City of Sausalito annexed into the District and the subsequent ratings will be combined into a single agency report.
The current review process will take several months and we will post our results once they have been published and adopted.
Beginning at 10p.m. on May 28th until 5 a.m. on June 1, Doyle Drive will be completely shut down for construction. The closure is expected to have significant impacts on traffic and experts are encouraging drivers to find alternative routes or avoid driving in the area all together.
The four day closure will shut down traffic from Doyle Drive at the Presidio to the Golden Gate Bridge. The closure is needed for construction crews to complete the connections and transfer traffic to the new permanent roadway, which includes the new Main Post Tunnels, northbound Battery Tunnel, northbound high viaduct and restored connections to Highway 1 / Park Presidio.
For more information:
UPDATE: Saturday's Battle of the Bay hockey game was a huge success! The Northbay Guns n Hoses Hockey team was victorious, winning the hockey game 4-2 against the Oakland Fire Department's hockey team. The event was well attended by firefighters from many different fire agencies, players' families and citizens of Vacaville. The event raised nearly $30,000 to benefit the Miley McCrary Angel Fund. The hockey players wore a purple shamrock logo on their helmets to honor Miley and many of the players shaved their heads to show their support.
Marin Firefighters Tom Moran and Ben Powers, co-founders of the Northbay Guns n Hoses Hockey Club, are part of spearheading a fundraiser for the daughter of a fellow firefighter from the Oakland Fire Department who was diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer. The Mission of the Hockey Club is to raise monies to provide financial assistance to fellow firefighters and police officers in times of need.
The Marin County area is surrounded by water and both the Marin County Fire Department and Southern Marin Fire District are responsible for and respond to a variety of water based incidents each year. Ensuring that our firefighters are well trained and highly comfortable in water environments is critical to our operations.
Today the Southern Marin Fire District and Marin County Fire Department began their first week of a regional firefighter recruit academy. The Recruit Academy is ten weeks in duration and provides a basic foundation for new firefighters. Regional Fire Academies provide an economical method to train firefighters from many agencies, at one time, thereby eliminating duplication as well as ensuring that they are all taught the same processes and procedures. The Academy is a carefully orchestrated process that prescribes every moment of activity while the student is learning.
This photo shows the students first class picture with their Instructors.
Commit a couple of hours, or the entire day and join others throughout the nation making communities a safer place to live on Saturday, May 2, 2015. Challenge friends, family members, a faith-based groups or youth organization to create a project and accomplish something great together!
Efforts will raise wildfire awareness and help protect homes, neighborhoods and entire communities, while increasing safety for wildland firefighters during future wildfires; or your project could lessen current post-fire impacts.
NFPA is pleased to announceState Farm®, the largest home insurer in the United States, has provided funding forsixty-five $500 project funding awardsto implement projects on May 2. State Farm has a long history of proactive wildfire safety education to its policyholders in high-risk regions and NFPA is proud to partner with State Farm on this national wildfire safety campaign.
Applying for a project funding award is easy and takes only a few minutes:
Firefighters can often be seen conducting training exercises that mimic events that they must often respond to. These exercises provide firefighters with the opportunity to practice and perfect their skills, and to do it in a controlled environment. In this photo Southern Marin firefighters at Fire Station 9 practice vehicle stabilization techniques using a variety of tools, including struts. Stabilizing overturned or unstable vehicles is a critical first step in providing aid to medical patients.
Southern Marin residents and friends of Southern Marin Fire we wanted to give you an update on the predicted storm which was shared to us by the California Office of Emergency Services.
The incoming storm has been predicted to deliver rain totals as high as 10” in the higher elevations by the end of the events sometime Monday. The storm is anticipated to come in two waves with the first wave arriving Thursday and lasting through Friday, and into Saturday with the heaviest rain on Friday (6-8” totals in higher elevations). They are predicting a slight break on Saturday and then the arrival of a second smaller event on Sunday (1-3” totals in higher elevations). The storm total prediction for most urban areas is 1.5 to 3”. The only change in the forecast is the rain will spread father down the coast south and the wind speeds have increased a bit so there may be some trees down and power outages with the potential for down power line. Residents are advised to never approach a down power line and always assume they are energized. In addition, some localized flooding may occur in the lower areas prone to flooding. As of today the NWS hydrologists are not predicting critical levels in the Marin creeks, but please remember that these areas are very dangerous due to the moving water and should be avoided by all ages. Fire District personnel will be keeping an eye on creek gauges throughout the storms in an effort to forecast any potential issues. The following advisories and watches are in effect:
Flash Flood Watch in effect from February 5, 10:00 PM PST until February 7, 06:00 AM PST
Wind Advisory in effect from February 6, 04:00 AM PST until February 7, 04:00 AM PST
Do you that every year 795,000 people suffer a stroke in our country and that it is the leading cause of long term disability?
Do you know the signs of a someone having a stroke? If a person gets to a hospital quick enough much of the damage can often be reversed.
Look at this graphic and remember F.A.S.T. Call 911 if you see someone showing signs of having a stroke. You can save a life.
Beginning the week of February 2, 2015, and for a two week period, PG&E will be driving through the communities and neighborhoods of Southern Marin with a highly sensitive gas monitoring vehicle. The monitor is a highly sensitive detector mounted to a vehicle, which is one thousand times more sensitive then PG&E's normal gas detection meters. There are a total of eight of these vehicles in PG&E's fleet for California.
PG&E uses this new technology to detect gas leaks long before they become a major problem. The sensors are mounted on top of a PG&E vehicle and the vehicle drives through the neighborhood at about 15 mile per hour. The PG&E vehicle is a Ford Escape, hybrid. This vehicle is supported by other PG&E staff who can follow up on detections of possible leaks.
PG&E works very closely with Fire Service Agencies. On January 25, 2015, PG&E and multiple public safety agencies, including Southern Marin Fire District and Mill Valley Fire, met with PG&E staff to review the program and vehicle, and discussed how this vehicle and service would integrate into emergency operations.
At the January 28, 2015 Board Meeting, Interim Fire Chief Tubbs, administered the Oath of Office to Fire Inspector Ryan Boykin. Ryan works in the Fire Prevention Bureau under the direction of the Deputy Fire Marshal, Fred Hilliard.
Inspector Boykin comes from a Fire Service family; his father is the former Fire Chief for Hayward, CA Fire Department and his mother is the founder of Boykin Consulting Services, a company who provides inspection services associated with hazardous materials and fire prevention. Ryan brings a passion for Fire Prevention to the District and plans to make Fire Prevention and Fire Investigation a career.
For the first time in its 77-year history, the Golden Gate Bridge will be closed for construction.
The Bridge will be closed for 52 hours over the second weekend of January 2015. The Bridge will close at 12:00 a.m., Saturday, January 10th, 2015. It will reopen at 4:00 a.m. Monday, January 12th, 2015.
During this weekend, the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District will install a Moveable Median Barrier on the Bridge and its approaches. The Barrier is expected to provide a safer system of separating opposing lanes of traffic, which will virtually eliminate the possibility of head-on collisions.
The Bridge District urges the public to stay away from the Bridge area during this weekend. If travel between San Francisco and the North Bay Area is necessary, here are some options to get to your destination:
Firefighters Travis Fox and Mike Coleman spearheaded an effort to raise funds from the Southern Marin Firefighters Association and individual members of the Fire District, for the purchase of ten bicycles that could be donated to the North Bay Children’s Center. Motivated by their desire to give a helping hand to those less fortunate, District personnel were clearly successful in making a difference in the lives of ten young children who otherwise would not be able to enjoy the experiences associated with learning to ride and be with their friends.
The attached photo shows Captain Sullivan and his crew, FF/Eng. Vollmer, Coleman and Boaz, and FF/PM Golden with several of the kids who received their new bikes.
The Fire Marshal's Office, located at Fire Station 1 in Sausalito, will be closed during the Christmas and New Years holidays. The Office will be closed beginning December 25th, 2015 through January 5th, 2015. If you need to make contact with the Fire Marsha's Officel, messages can be left on the Fire Marshal's Voice Mail (415) 289-4163 and they will be returned after January 5th.. In the event of an emergency please dial 911.
At 07:07 hours this morning, firefighters from Southern Marin Fire, Mill Valley Fire and Marin County Fire were dispatched to a reported structure fire at the Burger King Restaurant in Marin City. First arriving units noted smoke coming from the roof. Firefighters quickly discovered a small fire behind the parapet wall due to a possible electrical malfunction. The fire was quickly extinguished and the electric circuit de-energized. Damaged was contained to the parapet wall near the malfunctioned electric outlet.
NEW ADVISORY: Forecasters are predicting heavy rainfall and strong gusty winds developing late Wednesday and continuing through Friday. North Bay rainfall could exceed 5 inches on the windward side of the coast range. 3-5 inches of rain is possible locally. Heavy rain should be expected Thursday night as well. Possible impacts include trees uprooted, power lines down, flooding, mudslides, and traffic impacts.
The Southern Marin Fire District strongly encourages businesses and residents to prepare for the upcoming storm. The following lists potential issues and resources available to help you prepare for the many issues this storm may present. Flooding – If your home or business is in a low-lying area with a history of flooding, please take the time now to prepare for the possibility of flooding:Learn more about sandbags, flood maps, and other preparations here and here. If a blocked catch basin or storm drain is causing flooding, for Mill Valley contact the Department of Public Works at 415-384-4800 during regular business hours and non-emergency dispatch after hours 415-446-4526. Sausalito residents should contact the Department of Public Works at 415-289-4113 during normal working hours and 415-289-4170 after hours. For Marin County residents contact (415) 472-0911. If the blocked storm drain is causing an immediate danger, call 911 from any land or mobile phone.Please do not leave piles of leaves in the roadway. Please rake them up and place them in your green bin for disposal. Leaves left in the street will block storm drains and may lead to flooding. More information on high tides and flooding information can be found here.
Power OutagesHave flashlights and battery-operated radios with fresh batteries ready for updates on storm conditions and power outages. Tune in to KQED 88.5 FM, KCBS 740 AM or KGO 810 AM.Fire Officials recommend that residents do not use candles because of the risk of fire. Use battery-powered light sources. Click here for more useful tips. Anticipate power outages and bookmark PG&E’s power outage page.
Downed Trees and Limbs:
This morning at approximately 0300 hours, the Southern Marin area was hit with major rainfall that resulted in significant flooding issues. Firefighters from Mill Valley, Southern Marin, Tiburon and Marin County responded to several events in the region. Local weather stations reported rainfall of 1.6 inches over a three hour period.
Firefighters responded to both businesses and homes that were impacted by flooding as a result of the heavy rainfall. One area that sustained significant flooding included the Cove Shopping Center that reportedly had over three inches of standing water in the parking lot. A number of homes were also impacted, and damage varied depending on location.
Firefighters continue to work with businesses and residents in assisting mitigation efforts and will likely be responding to additional impacts from the weather today.
NOAA predicts that weather for the remainder of the day include a high tide at approximately 0900 this morning, as well as ongoing rainfall for the remainder of the day. Regular weather updates can be found at NOAA's website: www.noaa.gov/wx.html.
According to NOAA, A series of storm systems will impact the Bay Area starting this Friday and continuing through early next week. The weaker of the two storms will bring rain initially to the Bay Area Friday afternoon and then spreading southward through Saturday evening. The second stronger storm will impact the Bay Area Sunday through early Tuesday bringing heavier rainfall and possibly gusty winds.
On Friday, November 17, 2014, Southern Marin FD Firefighters from Fire Station 4 again partnered with the United States Marine Corps, and Radio Station ALICE, for the annual Toys for Tots drive. District Firefighters participated in this worthy cause last year and as the photos show, it was a huge success.
Firefighters from Mill Valley, Marin County and Southern Marin Fire District responded to a reported structure fire in Mill Valley. Upon arrival firefighters were able to quickly determine that all occupants were out of the house, and were then able to contain and extinguish the fire in the room of origin - a small office/den area. Damage was moderate and the cause of the fire is under investigation.
After thirty-seven years of selfless public service, Chief Jim Irving was recongnized today by Southern Marin Fire District personnel, friends, and other regional fire service partners as he completes his last active duty shift with the District. On duty staff lowered the colors at Station 9 and presented them to Chief Irving in recognition of his service and final duty shift to the District. The days events were at times festive and celebratory, and at times emotionally charged as the significance of this occasion was felt by all. The District, and Marin County Fire Service Community is exceedingly grateful to Chief Irving and his wife Trudy, for their dedication and love of this organization, the Marin County region and the fire service community. Best wishes to Chief Irving and Trudy as they embark on a new adventure.
At the November 19, 2014 Board Meeting, Chief Irving, in his final promotional ceremony as the District's Fire Chief, administers the Oath of Office to (L-R) Deputy Chief Chris Tubbs, Battalion Chief Kai Pasquale, and Captain Doug Paterson. The three were recently appointed to their new positions for the Southern Marin Fire District.