Fire Suppression and Rescue Services

The moment you call 9-1-1, our job begins. Whether it’s a medical emergency, fire, hazardous material incident, rescue situation, or natural disaster, Authority personnel are trained and ready to respond. Every Authority firefighter is certified as an emergency medical technician (EMT) or paramedic. With at least one paramedic on every response unit, patients with even the most serious conditions can be stabilized and treated prior to being transported to a hospital. 
The Arizona Fire & Medical Authority has over 100 sworn firefighters and 70 civilian full-time and part-time EMT's and Paramedics who respond to assist citizens in need approximately 15,000 times each year.

 Emergency Services Section

The Emergency Services Section includes the following program areas: Emergency Response, Emergency Medical Service (EMS), Wildland, Employee Health and Safety, Firefighting and Personal Protective Equipment, Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA), Training and Development, and Disaster Preparedness. The Emergency Services Section is overseen by an Assistant Chief. Personnel assigned to field operations are both sworn and non-sworn (civilians) personnel. The Authority also maintains a part-time non-sworn EMS personnel group that assists with Authority ambulance staffing.

 Emergency Responses

Emergency response represents the most visible aspect of the Authority’s mission. A major consideration in the delivery of effective emergency services is the timeframe, or emergency response time, in which these services are delivered. Emergency response time is defined as the elapsed time from the moment a call is received in the Regional Dispatch Center until the first unit arrives on scene. As a part of the Accreditation process through the Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI), Standards of Cover (SOC) were developed for emergency response. The Authority's SOC is based on empirical study and demonstrates continuous improvement strategies that include deployment considerations, minimum response times, and standards of cover assessments. These improvement strategies are used to establish formal performance measures or response goals.
The emergency response performance measure has been segmented into three components which are identified as Call Processing Time, Turnout Time, and Response Time Standards or travel time to the incident. The Authority compares emergency responses against these goals to determine the effectiveness of its emergency responses.

 Response Goals

Authority Call Processing Time: The Authority works in collaboration with the Regional Communications Center to strive for an emergency call processing time of sixty (60) seconds or less, 90% (percent) of the time.
Turnout Time: A critical component of response time is turnout time (the amount of time that passes between the incident being broadcast to firefighters and the time that Authority fire apparatus is en-route to the emergency). Turn out time standards are as follows:


Response Time Standards: The Authority will always strive to deliver emergency services in a safe and efficient manner. The response time goals for each type of response, excluding call processing time and turnout time, are detailed as follows:

 Demand Zones

The Authority’s service areas are divided into demand zones. These demand zones have specific response goals based on population density, travel distances and other factors. The response goals vary from four to twelve minutes based on the nature of the response in a given demand zone.
Maintaining staffing recommendations and response times within these guidelines assists the Authority and its partner agencies in meeting their Certificate of Necessity (CON) mandates for the provision of ambulance services, in maintaining and expanding Accreditation to the entire Authority, and in maintaining or improving the Insurance Services Office (ISO) ratings.

 Performance Objectives

Along with the Response Time Standards, the Authority also establishes certain on-scene Performance Objectives. These performance objectives define the Authority’s goals once responding units have arrived on the emergency scene. The following paragraphs detail the Authority’s Performance Objectives:
Fire Suppression Performance Objectives:
The first objective is stopping the escalation of a fire. Typically, this includes search and rescue for victims, confining the fire to the room of origin, and limiting the heat and smoke damage to the immediate area of the room of origin. The first arriving engine company initiates search/rescue and fire attack operations. The second arriving engine company provides a back-up line and/or a Rapid Intervention Crew (RIC). The first arriving ladder company provides ventilation and loss control measures as necessary. The response shall be capable of providing a 500 gallon per minute initial fire attack.
An effective fire force is comprised of a minimum of fifteen (15) personnel deployed via engine companies, ladder/ladder tender(s), rescue unit(s) and battalion chief(s). Upon notification of a “working fire”, additional personnel will be automatically dispatched via engine companies, ladder trucks, and various other vehicles.
Special Operations Performance Objectives:
  • Hazardous Materials: To isolate, evacuate, and identify the hazardous material(s) that created the emergency and mitigate the hazard.
  • Technical Rescue: To initially determine the number, location, and condition of victims involved in the incident and to extricate the victim(s) using the lowest risk option possible.
  • An Effective Response Force (ERF) will be composed of eight to fourteen personnel deployed in engine and ladder companies, rescue units, hazmat or technical rescue apparatus and battalion chief(s).
Emergency Medical Operations Performance Objectives:
The objective of the Emergency Medical Operations is to stop the escalation of a medical emergency, within the capabilities of the effective response force. Specifically, assess patients and prioritize care to minimize death and disability. Intervene successfully in life-threatening emergencies, stabilize patients to prevent additional suffering, and provide basic or advanced life support and transportation to a treatment facility as necessary.
An effective response force of three to six personnel with a minimum of two paramedics deployed via ambulance/medic unit, engine company, and/or ladder company or other units as necessary to initiate basic or advanced life support activities as appropriate.

Dial 9-1-1

For All Emergencies
Official website for the Arizona Fire & Medical Authority, the Buckeye Valley Fire District, the North County Fire & Medical District, and the South County Fire & Medical District.
Phone: (623) 544-5400 | Email:
18818 N. Spanish Garden Drive, Sun City West, Arizona 85375