The mission of the Fire Department is to create a safe, self-reliant and viable community through prompt and efficient emergency services; effective fire prevention and environmental control; and community outreach and training in fire safety, emergency medical treatment, and disaster preparedness.
The Compton Fire Department was established in 1901, with a small force of volunteer firefighters. In 1925, the department converted to professional status, hiring its first paid fire chief and five firefighters, supplementing its current staff of 20 volunteer firefighters.
Today the Fire Department has 84 sworn employees and five civilian employees. Its resources include four fire stations and nine front-line emergency vehicles comprised of four fire engines, one truck, two paramedic squads, and two basic life support transport ambulances.
In addition to emergency services, the Fire Department maintains the James Shern Fire Academy, partnering with Compton Community College to provide an accredited program of Firefighter Training; offers a Fire Explorer program for youth ages 14 to 21; provides public information and training in fire safety and disaster preparedness; and provides free blood pressure screening at all four fire stations.
The Compton Fire Department ranks among the five busiest departments in California, responding to an average of 10,000 emergency calls per year. Approximately 75% of the calls are for Emergency Medical Services (EMS).
The department’s average response time is 4 minutes and 30 seconds. This response is faster than the national average, as well as response times of nearby cities served by the Los Angeles County Fire Department.
The Fire Prevention Bureau performs activities designed to help reduce fires and hazardous materials incident in the City. Their activities include code compliance inspections, inspections of buildings for fire and life safety, investigations of fires of unknown or suspicious origin, and review of all building plans to ensure compliance with fire and life safety codes. The Fire Prevention Bureau also manages the Hazardous Materials Disclosure Program.