City of Palo Alto Fire Department

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Welcome to the Palo Alto Fire Department

 Firefighters donating gifts









The City of Palo Alto Fire Department provides services to a resident population of 66,649. The large number of high-technology businesses and the Stanford University campus increase the daytime population to over 150,000 persons. Service areas for the Fire Department include the Stanford University campus and unincorporated areas of Santa Clara County.  The Department's response area covers nearly 50 square miles, from Skyline Boulevard in the Palo Alto foothills to the Palo Alto Baylands, and includes two freeways, an airport, two significant hospitals and several medical centers, a large industrial and research park, an internationally acclaimed university, high-rise buildings, a large wildland and urban interface, and the southern portion of the San Francisco Bay. 

The purpose of the Fire Department is to protect life, property and the environment from fire, hazardous materials and other disasters; to provide rapid emergency response, proactive code enforcement, modern fire prevention methods and progressive safety education for our citizens and coworkers; and to promote customer satisfaction by maintaining quality, professional and friendly service to others.


The City of Palo Alto Fire Department is currently seeking accreditation through the Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI)

Accreditation is a comprehensive self-assessment and quality improvement model that enables organizations to examine past, current and future service levels and internal performance and compare them to current research and industry best practices.  This process leads to a more efficient and effective emergency service organization.  The accreditation Program, administered by the Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI) allows fire and emergency service agencies to compare their performance to:


  • Determine community risk and safety needs and develop community-specific Standards of Cover.
  • Evaluate the performance of the department.
  • Establish a method for achieving continuous organizational improvement.


The CFAI accreditation process provides a well-defined, internationally-recognized benchmark system to measure the quality of fire and emergency services.

2018 Goals

Goal 1 - Foster a healthy environment that allows our members to flourish.
Goal 2 - Create a comprehensive department succession program.
Goal 3 - Complete internal self-assessment and peer evaluation as part of becoming an Accredited Fire


Last Updated: Oct 16, 2018