Heartland Fire

LOCAL RESCUE PERSONNEL HEAD TO HOUSTON TO ASSIST IN EPIC FLOOD

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Texas National Guard,  U.S. Army photo by 1st Lt. Zachary West

August 29, 2017 (San Diego) – Rescue personnel from the San Diego region including East County are heading to Texas, where  Hurricane Harvey, a category 4 hurricane since reclassified as a tropical storm,  has dumped the heaviest rainfall ever recorded on the U.S. mainland—50 inches or more in places.

Much of Houston, Texas is submerged beneath a swath of floodwaters 50 miles wide.  so much rain fell that the National Weather Service had to add new color coding to its maps.

At least eight people have died.  An estimated 1.7 million  have evacuated  in Texas and Louisana as the storm continues its destructive path, according to the White House website, with many people still awaiting rescue, trapped amid rising waters. Now, a levee south of Houston in Brazoria County has broken and residents in its path are ordered to get out immediately. 

EL CAJON POLICE SET UP FUND TO AID HOMELESS MOTHER OF SEVEN, WHO CAME TO AID OF UNCONSCIOUS OFFICER

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 20, 2017 (El Cajon) – The El Cajon Police Officers Association has set up a Go fund me page (https://www.gofundme.com/ieshafund ) for Iesha Booker, a homeless mother of seven who came to the aid of Officer Sioson after he was knocked unconscious by a suspect who continued to assault him, causing serious injuries.

The 34-year-old MTS bus driver, was at the KFC in El Cajon when the assault occurred.  “When everyone else at the KFC stood around shocked, Lesha quickly stepped in, using Officer Sioson’s police radio to transmit `Officer Down at the KFC!’   It was that transmission which allowed us to expedite help to Officer Sioson, quickly arrest the suspect,” says Travis Howard, president of the El Cajon Police Officers Association.

A HOT DAY IN FIREFIGHTERS’ BOOTS: HEARTLAND FIRE OPS 101

 

By Rebecca Jefferis Williamson

June 21, 2017 (El Cajon) -- Run up three flights of stairs in heavy firefighter boots--in the heat wave.  To walk in someone else’s shoes, or firefighter’s boots, can be eye opening and “deepen” your respect for what these men and women firefighters are required to do.  The opportunity to learn what Heartland Fire & Rescue does on a routine basis was extended via their first-ever Fire Ops 101 class held Saturday, June 17th, at their Thomas H. Owen Sr.  training facility in El Cajon. 

"FIRE OPS 101" WITH HEARTLAND FIRE JUNE 17

 

East County News Service

May 19, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) – What’s it like to be a firefighter?  Find out on June 17th from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Heartland Fire Training Facility, 1301 North Marshall Avenue in El Cajon. “Fire Ops 101,“ a fire ground-operations orientation for civilians including elected  officials and media representatives, will include actually suiting up in firefighter protective clothing, donning self-contained breathing apparatus and actually going inside a real fire to experience firsthand the environment in which firefighters work.

FIRE DAMAGES KAELIN’S MARKET IN EL CAJON

 

East County News Service

July 24, 2016 (El Cajon) -- Heartland Fire & Rescue units were dispatched to a reported fire at Kaelin’s market in the 1400 block of East Main Street on Friday afternoon.  Fire crews arrived within four minutes to find a single story commercial building under construction with smoke inside the building. A second alarm was quickly called due to the extreme heat conditions firefighters were facing and the potential of fire spread.

HEARTLAND FIREFIGHTERS RESCUE WOMAN FROM FIRE IN LEMON GROVE

 

East County News Service

May 26, 2016 (Lemon Grove) -- Heartland Fire & Rescue crews in Lemon Grove responded to reports of a structure fire in the 8000 block of Alton Drive around 8:30 this morning. Firefighters found heavy smoke coming from the windows of a duplex unit and a woman halfway out of a window at the rear of the duplex. 

THE GOATS ARE BACK—CLEARING BRUSH IN LEMON GROVE

 

April 20, 2016 (Lemon Grove) -- The City of Lemon Grove, along with its fire department, Heartland Fire & Rescue, will be taking steps to clear brush from eight and a-half acres near Lawton Drive and Camino De Las Palmas in Lemon Grove. Goats will be used as part of the process in clearing heavy brush to minimize fire danger and help create defensible space for homes in this area.

ELM began delivering 150 adult and 50 juvenile goats (kids) on Monday, April 18, 2016. The brush clearing event will last approximately 2 weeks. The goats may be visible to those traveling along the 125 freeway in the area of Lemon Grove during this weed abatement process.

SNAKES ALIVE! MOM FINDS 8-FOOT BOA IN LA MESA HOME

 

 

Photo, left to right:  Heartland & Rescue Firefighter/Paramedic Neil Carter, Captain Tom Brown, and Firefighter/Paramedic Sean Finley. 

By Miriam Raftery

October 16, 2015 (La Mesa) – A woman who recently moved into a rental home at 7000 Colony Drive in La Mesa with her children got a big surprise on Saturday. Walking out of the family’s bedroom, she found a huge snake in the kitchen.

The startled mother called 9-1-1 and barricaded herself in the bedroom with her children while waiting for help to arrive. Heartland Fire & Rescue in La Mesa, along with La Mesa Police and the El Cajon Animal Control soon came to the rescue.

FIREWORKS DAMAGES ASSESSED

 

By Miriam Raftery

July 7, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) - Last week, we reminded you that fireworks are illegal in San Diego County and cautioned you about the dangers.  Today we have some stories that make clear why shooting off your own fireworks is not a good idea. Fireworks caused fires locally and statewide including a major brush fire, as well as some serious injuries.

FIRE INSURANCE RATES FOR HOMEOWNERS, BUSINESS TO DROP IN HEARTLAND FIRE DISTRICT—THANKS TO DISTRICT ATTAINING “RARE” TOP NATIONAL RATING

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Heartland Fire & Rescue Chief Rick Sitta delivers good news at El Cajon Council meeting

June 9, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – If you live in the cities of El Cajon, La Mesa or Lemon Grove, your fire insurance rates will soon be going down. That’s because Heartland Fire & Rescue, which provides firefighting services for all three cities, has received a class 1 rating from the Insurance Services Office (ISO).   

The  ISO rates 47,000 fire departments across the United States and of those, only 98 have attained a class 1 rating, including only 8 fire districts in the entire state of California.  “Class 1 communities are very rare, and some of these scores are the highest we’ve ever seen,” says Stephanie Ruscansky from the ISO, who notes that only a small fraction of 1% of all agencies rated attain a Class 1 rating.

SMOKED PORK: TRUCK LOADED WITH MEAT BURNS ON I-8

 

East County News Service

Photo courtesy ECM news partner 10 News

April 29, 2015 (San Diego’s East County)—A semi-truck burst into flames on I-8 near Lake Jennings Park Road in Lakeside on Thursday, turning its load of frozen meat into smoked pork.

CHAMBER’S “CABARET” EVENT SHINES SPOTLIGHT ON LOCAL HEROES

 

By Miriam Raftery

February 26, 2015 (La Mesa)—The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce celebrated the accomplishments of local police, fire, medical response and senior volunteers at its annual “Salute to Heroes” banquet on February 18th at the Town and Country Hotel’s Golden Ballroom. 

The event also featured installation of officers and a “Come to the Cabaret” theme complete with New York cabaret singer Devlin, pianist Chris Drury, and a cabaret cake cooked up by Grove Pastry Shop.

This year’s honorees were:

HEART TRANSPLANT NEEDED: BENEFIT FOR LA MESA DEPUTY FIRE MARSHAL

Bolt Brewery to hold fundraiser Sun. 2/8 at 1:00 p.m.

By Kristin Kjaero

February 7, 2014 (La Mesa) – 33-year old Heartland Deputy Fire Marshal Adam Beardsley needs a heart transplant, and his colleagues at Heartland are holding a fundraiser February 8 to help with the unexpected expenses. Proceeds from an opportunity drawing with prizes and t-shirts sales will go to help the family, and Bolt Brewery has agreed to donate back 50%. Donations can be made on-line here.

Since January 6 Beardsley has been living at UCLA Ronald Reagan Hospital. His wife, Megan Beardsley, commutes from her job at SDSU to visit him on weekends, taking on double expenses to rent an apartment close to the hospital. Beardley’s wife, sister, and parents all drive to Los Angeles on different days, so that one of them is with him at all times while waiting for a life-saving call when a donor heart may be found.

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RESIDENT ARRESTED FOR ARSON FIRE IN LA MESA

 

East County News Service

October 25, 2014 (La Mesa) –La Mesa Police have arrested an arson suspect linked to a fire late last night that displaced eight people from a home in the Rolando area.  Brad Bach, 58, of La Mesa has been booked into county jail for arson of an inhabited structure.  Damage to the structure and contents is estimated at $260,000, according to Heartland Fire.

FAMILY OF 6 DISPLACED BY FIRE

 

September 19, 2013 (El Cajon ) – Four children and two adults are staying with family members temporarily after an attic fire damaged their two-story home at 930 Prescott Avenue in El Cajon this afternoon. 

Quick action by fire crews from Heartland Fire & Rescue in El Cajon and La Mesa, along with firefighters from Cal Fire, kept the fire from reaching neighboring homes.  Heartland Fire reports the fire was knocked down in less than 20 minutes.   The damage was mostly to the attic and roof area.

PARENTS ARRESTED IN DEATH OF BABY LEFT OVERNIGHT IN CAR



 

July 28, 2013 (El Cajon) – Today, El Cajon Police announced the arrest of Israel Soto and Jessica Quezada for the death of their four-month-old baby. The couple’s other three children, ages 3, 2, and 1, have been taken into protective custody by Child Protective Services.

RESIDENT INJURED, TWO CATS DIE IN LEMON GROVE FIRE

 

April 13, 2013 (Lemon Grove) – A man with physical limitations was transported to UCSD Medical Center with mild injuries after escaping a  fire at a duplex in the 7200 block of Central Avenue in Lemon Grove. Two dogs also escaped the fire, but two cats were found deceased, overcome by smoke.

Red Cross will be assisting five adults and two children displaced in the fire, as well as the two dogs.

CATALYTIC CONVERTER CAUSED FIRES ON I-8,LEADING TO TRAFFIC DELAYS ON SURFACE STREETS

 

April 12, 2013 (San Diego's East County) -- The cause of today's spot fires along Interstate 8 was accidental, says Heartland Fire spoksman Sonny Saghera.  Heartland responded to reports of several small fires along westbound I-8 from West Main Street in El Cajon to Severin Drive in La Meas around 1 p.m. today. 

Heartland Fire & Rescue units from La Mesa and El Cajon, assisted by engines from Cal Fire and Santee, were dispatched to contain the four individual fires approximately 100 yards apart from each other.  A structure on Murray Drive in La Mesa was briefly threatened, but fire crews aggressively attacked the flames to keep them along the freeway’s shoulder. 

JOINT CHAMBERS MIXER AT HEARTLAND MARCH 28

 

March 17, 2013 (San Diego's East County) -- A join Chamber of Commerce mixer will be held at the Heartland Fire Training Facility in El Cajon on March 28 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Join Chambers from throughout East County to learn about the Facility that provides training for east county. There will be food & beverage, demonstrations, hands-on activities, a Mayor's challenge, and meet your firefighters.

QUICK ACTION BY HEARTLAND FIREFIGHTERS SAVES HOME IN EL CAJON

 

March 7, 2013 (El Cajon )--A Heartland Fire & Rescue engine company in El Cajon was returning from a call at 5:30 this evening and came across a possible garage fire in the 100 block of West Douglas Avenue. The fire company, noticing heavy black smoke from the garage of the three-story town home, quickly called for a first alarm assignment to combat the fire.

PROPANE TANKS EXPLODE, CAUSING FIRE THAT DAMAGES EXTERIOR OF GINGHAM’S RESTAURANT IN LA MESA VILLAGE

Neighbor who reported fire says rooster crowing alerted him to the blaze

By Miriam Raftery

December 9, 2012 (La Mesa) – “It sounded like really big thunder,” ECM writer and La Mesa resident Ariele Brooks said of propane tank explosions that damaged the exterior of Gingham’s Restaurant on La Mesa Boulevard downtown.  “First my back door rattled two times about 5 or 10 minutes apart…Nothing was out there, so I thought maybe it was an explosion.  But then there was this very loud sound.”

Another neighbor, Bob James, told La Mesa Today that a rooster crowing awakened him. Spotting flames, he called 911.  "The rooster is a hero!" he proclaimed. (No word on whether the plucky foul who saved the downtown village will sway councilmembers on the merits of owning roosters, which is currently prohibited in La Mesa.)

VIEJAS AND HEARTLAND FIRE TRAINING AUTHORITY FORGE JOINT POWERS AGREEMENT

JPA is first in California involving a Native American tribe

By Miriam Raftery

October 18, 2012 (El Cajon ) – The Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians and Heartland Fire Training Authority this week announced that they have entered into a historic Joint Powers Agreement (JPA). 

“This JPA finally allows Viejas to have a seat at the table and have a full and meaningful partnership with other fire agencies that we’ve worked with for years in a very productive way,” said Viejas Fire Chief Don Butz. “Ultimately, this benefits the entire region, since wildfires and other natural disasters do not recognize geographic, political or other borders. We are all stronger and better protected when we work and train together.”

FIRE BRIEFLY EVACUATES HOMES IN EAST COUNTY

June 12, 2012 (El Cajon) – A brush fire this evening at Lavala Lane and Highway 8 Business loop in El Cajon charred at least two acares, forcing evacuations in the area briefly, Incident Page Network reported. Helicopters dropped water on the blaze, swiftly bringing it under control.

Heartland Fire Dispatch reports units are now being released from the scene.

FIREFIGHTERS SAVE UNCONSCIOUS WOMAN FROM FIRE IN EL CAJON, 2 SERIOUSLY INJURED

 

Late night fire displaces 4 adults and 2 children

January 31, 2012 (El Cajon)—A Heartland Fire & Rescue crew from El Cajon responded to reports of a structure fire at a board and care facility at 1460 E. Lexington Avenue in El Cajon late last night. Fire crews arrived to find heavy smoke and flames coming from the facility, with reports of a trapped victim.

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