First Inaugural Fire Academy Begins in Placentia

Placentia’s new Fire and Life Safety Department has begun rigorous training exercises. “The first inaugural Fire Academy began for the new Placentia Fire and Life Safety Department on Monday, May 4, 2020,” according to a press release. “The Academy began with a small commencement ceremony that introduced the firefighters to the Placentia City Council. Remarks were made by Mayor Ward Smith, Councilmember Rhonda Shader, City Administrator Damien R. Arrula, Fire Chief J. Pono Van Gieson, and Chief Executive Officer of Lynch EMS, Walt Lynch.”

Personnel will handle firefighting, emergency medical services, and hazardous materials. They’re about to embark on hundreds of hours of instruction, beginning their days at 7 a.m.

“I am excited to see our firefighters train with the most modern firefighting equipment and techniques, while preparing them to be integral parts of the Placentia community upon graduation from the Academy,” said Councilmember Rhonda Shader.

Graduation is scheduled for mid-June and they will take their oaths on July 1.

Placentia had previously contracted with the Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) for fire and emergency medical services for more than two decades. To improve emergency services, the City Council voted last year to establish a new City of Placentia Fire and Life Safety Department. The city says nearly 77% of its 911 calls are for medical emergencies.