History of PCFD

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Placer County’s early fire service began in 1941 when the county funded a single firefighter operating principally in the Lincoln area who, while maintaining and operating a single fire truck, responded to fires with local volunteers.

County fire protection grew to the point that services were being provided from six stations in Lincoln, Penryn, Foresthill, Bowman, Colfax and Alta

In 1974, Placer County entered into a Cooperative Fire Protection Agreement with CAL FIRE, integrating state and local firefighting resources, both career and volunteer, into an effective fire department. In the twenty years between 1980 and 2000 the county continued to contract for fire protection services with CAL FIRE and by the year 2000, fire protection was being provided by fully staffed stations in Lincoln. Bowman, Colfax and Alta, and from five volunteer stations in Dutch Flat, Fowler, Paige, Thermalands and Sheridan.

In 2001, CAL FIRE/PCFD assumed fire protection services in the Dry Creek Fire Protection District area after voters approved a dissolution of that district.

Two years later, the United Auburn Indian Community (UAIC) entered into a formal agreement in 2003 with the county for CAL FIRE/PCFD fire protection and advanced life support services for Thunder Valley Casino in Lincoln.  

Population centers continued to grow prompting the UAIC in 2008 to expand services at the Thunder Valley Casino and in surrounding areas by adding adding career staffed paramedic truck company

Most recently, the City of Colfax and the Alta Fire District entered into an agreement with both Placer County and CAL FIRE in 2021 to provide fire protection services at three volunteer fire stations (one in Alta and two in Colfax) using PCFD volunteer firefighters. This latest agreement will provide Colfax and Alta with a level of fire service that is commensurate with the level of service provided to Placer County.

CAL FIRE/PCFD currently provides year-round, all hazard fire and emergency services over approximately 475 square miles of unincorporated county area, or nearly one third of the county. The area served has a population of approximately 57,000. and service is provided by 61 full time firefighters from five fully staffed, 24-hour/day fire stations located in North Auburn, Ophir, Lincoln, the Sunset Industrial Area, and Dry Creek and volunteer and career stations in the historic communities on the Interstate 80 corridor.