Fire Department Department Home

Kids Page - Safety Tips

What to do if you catch on fire:


STOP! Stay where you are. Do not run.
DROP! Drop to the ground or to the floor and cover your face with your hands.
ROLL! Roll to put out the flames.

Teach your children to react quickly to fire. Teach them to stop, drop, and roll when they themselves (their clothes or hair) catch fire. When they stop, they prevent oxygen from feeding the fire, and when they drop and roll, they smother it. If they see something else burning, they should tell an adult immediately. Play games with your children: give them hypothetical situations and test how quickly they can respond correctly.

Learn Not to Burn

Do not play with fire and don't play with anything that burns. This means matches, gasoline, candles, and the stove. If you see something burning that shouldn't be, tell an adult immediately.

Fireproof your home. Keep flammable materials out of childrens' reach and be alert when you have things burning (candles, fireplace fires, or the stove). Keep small children away from these hazards.

Dial 911

Fire Department Patch

When you see a fire that shouldn't be there, yell "Fire!" as loud as you can and find an adult immediately. Do not go close to the fire or put anything on it. If you can't find an adult, go to the nearest phone and dial 9-1-1. Tell the person there's a fire and give them your name and address.

Teach your children when it's appropriate to call 911. Make sure they know to find an adult if there is one close to the fire, but also make sure they're not afraid to use 911. Tell them what to say when they call: their name, address, and what the problem is. Let them know they can use 911 whenever there's an emergency, not just because of a fire. Write your address clearly and put it in a permanent place next to the phone.

Know When to Go

Smoke detectors sense when there is smoke in your home and make a loud noise. When you hear a smoke detector, get out of the building immediately. Do not take anything with you. With any fire, you should get out of the building quickly but calmly - do not run.

Find the shortest way to get out that isn't blocked by fire. Check to see if doorknobs are hot before opening doors. If there is a lot of smoke, try to crawl under it - as close to the floor as possible.

Help your children check your fire alarms. Make sure there's one close enough to every room to wake the people in it. If there is any room that doesn't have a fire alarm close enough, redistribute the fire alarms and/or install new ones. Show your children how to check the fire alarms and replace any old batteries. Do this with them regularly. An intermittent chirp from the smoke detector indicates a low battery condition. We recommend you change the batteries twice a year. An easy way to remember this is to do so whenever you change your clock for daylight savings. "Change your clock AND change your batteries!"

Know Where to Go

Make a map of your home. If there's more than one floor, do each floor on a different page. Think of one symbol for doors and another for windows. Carefully draw every room in your home and be sure to show every door and window. If you want to, you can use different colors for different parts of the map.

Now, think of the best paths out of the building. There should be at least two ways to get out of each room. Think about which path you would use depending on where the fire was. Draw each of the paths on your map.

Talk to your parents about where you think people should meet if there is a fire. It should be at least as far away from the building as the building's height. Make sure you can get to the meeting place from every path out of the building. Mark a big "X" on the map to show the meeting place.

Show your map to everyone in your family. Explain each of the escape paths and make sure everyone knows where the meeting place is. Put up copies of your map all around your home, just the way you see them in schools and hotels.

Help your children make a fire escape map. Remind them to include every room in your home, especially the basement or attic if there is one. Help them determine the best paths out of each room, at least two if possible. With the rest of your family, decide on a suitable meeting place.

Contact Information

Leonard Thompson, Fire Chief

Jeff Schach,
Assistant Chief - Fire Administration, Operations & Disaster Preparedness, EMS Division

Jessica Power,
Fire Marshal – Fire Prevention & Technical Services Division

Dave Kahn,
Battalion Chief

Chad Costa,
Battalion Chief - Communications, Technology

Mike Medeiros,
Battalion Chief - Communications, Technology, Training

Kevin Weaver,
Interim Battalion Chief - Support Services Division, Safety & Wellness


Petaluma Fire Department Location:
198 ‘D’ St.
Petaluma, CA 94952
phone: 707.778.4390
alternative emergency phone:
fax: 707.931.0668
Fire Prevention Bureau Location:
22 Bassett Street
Fire Marshal
phone: 707.778.4389
fax: 707.206.6036
mailing address:
11 English Street
Petaluma, CA 94952