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The original item was published from 10/11/2022 2:45:53 PM to 11/9/2022 6:08:51 PM.

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Posted on: October 11, 2022

[ARCHIVED] City of La Verne Recognizes National Fire Prevention Week

Nation fire prevention week - Fire Truck

The City of La Verne is recognizing National Fire Prevention Week by highlighting the steps the La Verne Fire Department (LVFD) has taken to restore the department and reminding residents about proactive steps they can take to protect their properties and reduce risks of a potential fire. National Fire Prevention Week is observed from October 9-15.

“Fire Prevention Week is a time for the public to educate themselves about fire safety and learn how to prevent a potential fire,” said Fire Chief Chris Nigg. “LVFD continues to grow, and our new staff members allow us to expand our services to better protect the community. Our efforts, combined with the community’s efforts, will help ensure La Verne is taking the necessary precautions to reduce the risk of fires.”

LVFD has opened up key positions to strengthen the department’s capabilities and help accomplish its strategic goals. Fire Marshal Robert Montaghami joined the La Verne Fire Department in April 2022 and is responsible for all Community Risk Reduction efforts, which includes fire prevention operations, permits, inspections and public education. Montaghami has also been developing La Verne’s broad scope Community Risk Reduction Plan, which will identify potential public safety threats and outline steps to reduce public safety risks from both natural and man-made disasters. Montaghami has 14 years of experience and previously served as La Habra Heights Fire Department’s Fire Marshal. 

LVFD also welcomed Deputy Chief Brandon Coatney in October 2022, who began his career with the San Bernardino City Fire Department in 1997. In 2015, he transferred to the Fullerton Fire Department as a Captain and was eventually promoted to Division Chief of Training in 2018. In 2020, he became the Deputy Chief of Operations for the Fullerton and Brea Fire Department(s), as well as the president of the Orange County Fire Chief’s Association Operations Section. He is currently the Operations section President of the California State Fire Chiefs Association. In his new role with LVFD, Deputy Chief Coatney will be responsible for the Operations Division and the direct oversight of three Battalion Chiefs. His addition will continue to strengthen the La Verne Fire Department’s senior leadership and contribute to the department’s overall emergency operations, tactics and administrative efficiency.

Together, these two additions to the LVFD provide for the long awaited and much needed increased capacity necessary for a professional municipal fire department to be relevant and operationally sustainable. Both positions were also identified by the recent community risk analysis and standards of cover report, as necessary, for the department to effectively provide service to the community. Modern day fire service delivery embraces the four phases of disaster management: preparedness, mitigation, response and recovery. Each phase is reliant upon the other and requires expertise from the varying professional staff within the LVFD.

In addition to LVFD’s efforts, there are measures La Verne residents can take to help protect their homes from a potential fire. As the statewide drought persists, foothill communities like La Verne are at higher risk of wildfires due to the accumulated dead and dry brush. Residents should take proactive measures to safeguard their homes by removing flammable vegetation throughout the fire season and maintaining their homes properly. Wildfire mitigation measures include:

  • Trimming all dead vegetation throughout the property down to three inches or less to reduce the ground-fuel ladder and to provide defensible space around structures.
  • Ensuring every property has a proper address marker prominently displayed on the building for quicker identification when responding to emergencies.
  • Providing three feet of clearance of all vegetation and/or obstructions around the circumference of the hydrant when a fire hydrant is adjacent to the property boundary. This is to provide clear access by fire personnel when necessary.

Smoke alarms are critical tools in fire prevention and response because they can sense smoke well before a person can. Working smoke alarms have been proven to decrease the risk of home fire deaths by half. All smoke and carbon monoxide alarms should be checked and replaced regularly and meet the needs of all household members, including those with sensory or physical disabilities.

For more information on LVFD and fire prevention, visit LVFD’s website. Residents are also encouraged to follow the La Verne Fire Department on Facebook to receive news and updates from LVFD on social media.

Contact: Fire Chief Christopher Nigg
Telephone: (909) 596-5991

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