Public Education & Safety


Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT)

Visit the Santa Cruz County CERT website where signing up for upcoming classes is free and easy.

Disasters can occur at any time.  Friends, neighbors, and families can be adversely affected by the results. The Santa Cruz City CERT team will prepare you to help assist your community during these trying times.  If there is a disaster, professional responders (fire, police) may not be immediately available to help.

CERT trains people in basic emergency response skills, such as fire safety, light building search and rescue, team organization, and disaster emergency medical operations. Using this training, CERT members can assist emergency responders and others in their neighborhood, workplace and community.

Earthquake Preparedness

Don't be caught off guard.  Be prepared for the next earthquake.  Seven Steps to Earthquake Safety

Smoke Alarms

Smoke Alarms that are properly installed and maintained play a vital role in reducing fire deaths and injuries. Having a working smoke alarm cuts the chances of dying in a reported fire in half.  Read the Smoke Detector Safety Tip sheet for further information and placement of smoke detectors.  

Carbon Monoxide Alert

Often called the silent killer, carbon monoxide is an invisible, odorless, colorless gas created when fuels (such as gasoline, wood, coal, natural gas, propane, oil, and methane) burn incompletely. In the home, heating and cooking equipment that burn fuel are potential sources of carbon monoxide. Vehicles or generators running in an attached garage can also produce dangerous levels of carbon monoxide.  Carbon Monoxide Alarms are required in all homes.  See Carbon Monoxide Safety Tips for more information.

Child Seat Safety

Starting January 1, 2017, children under 2-years old MUST BE REAR-FACING unless they weigh 40 pounds or more, or are 40 inches tall or more. Vehicle safety belt should fit as follows: lap belt low (touching the thighs), shoulder belt across middle of chest and shoulder (not under arm or behind back), knees bent comfortably without slouching. If your child does not fit this description, make sure they ride in a booster seat. For more information visit our Car Seat Safety Page.

It is always a good idea to have a certified technician check the installation of your car seat:

Child Seat Safety Inspection Sites (by appointment only)
California Highway Patrol 831-662-0511 
Santa Cruz City Fire Department 831-420-5280
Leo Gomez at Santa Cruz Police Department 831-420-5952 (Call 2-5 days in advance)
Scotts Valley Fire Protection District 831-438-0211 
Watsonville Fire Department 831-768-3209 
Dominican Hospital Monthly events -  January 14th, 9-1
For most agencies, please schedule car seat appointments 4-6 weeks in advance

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation & AED Training

The Santa Cruz Fire Department does not provide CPR training to the public.  Please see our list of CPR Providers.  

Living with Fire in Santa Cruz County

A Guide for Homeowners
» Creating a Defensible Space Around Your Home
» General Guidelines for Creating Defensible Space
» 100 Feet of Defensible Space
» Homeowner Checklist: Make Your Home Fire Safe

After the Fire

When fire strikes, lives are suddenly turned around. Often, the hardest part is knowing where to begin and who to contact.  This 16-page booklet provides information on recovering from a fire, including what to do during the first 24 hours, insurance considerations, valuing your property, replacement of valuable documents, salvage hints, fire department operations, and more. 

Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery!

Energizer LogoSponsored by the International Association of Fire Chiefs and Energizer brand batteries, the program urges you to adopt a simple lifesaving habit: Change all of your Smoke Alarm batteries when you change your clocks back to Standard Time each fall.


Free viewers are required for some of the attached documents.
They can be downloaded by clicking on the icons below.

Acrobat Reader Flash Player QuickTime Windows Media Player Microsoft Silverlight Word Viewer Excel Viewer PowerPoint Viewer