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Tallahassee Fire Department

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EMS | Training | Fire Suppression | Rescue


Training is instrumental in the development and advancement of Fire Suppression & Rescue personnel, and our curriculum places an emphasis on customer service and professional fire service advancement. TFD achieves this by coordinating and delivering in-service training through practical skills activities, classroom course delivery and online curriculum. The training grounds consists of:

  • 6 story multi-use training tower
  • 2.5 story Class “A” burn facility
  • Natural gas and propane burn station
  • Regional Hazardous Material and Urban Search & Rescue training station.

Fire Suppression and Rescue

Firefighters putting out a blazeThe Tallahassee Fire Department responds to nearly 400 structures fires, both commercial and residential, as well as approximately 200 vehicles fires, over 900 brush and rubbish fires, and more than 1100 vehicle rescues annually. As a result of the diversity of emergency calls, personnel must be properly equipped, trained, and at the ready to respond and mitigate any of these emergency situations. Beyond Leon County, the department also provides emergency response via mutual aid to communities in the surrounding area.

Citizens' Fire Academy

Training facilityWonder what it would be like to be a firefighter? Well now you can find out. The Department's Citizens' Fire Academy delivered twice annually, is an informative learning process that provides an opportunity for you to receive 5 weeks of classroom and field instruction regarding the various responsibilities held by firefighters. While attending, you will receive information and instruction on issues such as vehicle extrication, Liquid Propane (LP) Gas Fires, Fire Hose Deployment, Fire Attack, Fire Ventilation, Safety, Communications, Airport Fire Operations, Hazardous Materials, Vertical Rescue, Emergency Medical Procedures, and much more. All of this is enhanced by your opportunity to ride along with a company, rappel with a TRT member, and extinguish a Liquid Propane Gas Fire. The Academy is free.

EMS Programs - Community Involvement

To help promote good health habits and to prevent potentially serious illness, the Fire Department offers free blood pressure screening to you as a public service at all 16 fire stations located throughout Leon County. In addition to the free blood pressure check, you are given a card which maintains a record of your blood pressure readings. You are encouraged to take this card with you on visits to your physician for review. Learn more about lowering your blood pressure by reading this American Heart Association report.

The Difference Between BLS and ALS

EMT TrainingEmergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) are trained in Basic Life Support (BLS) measures. To become an EMT, one has to attend and graduate from an accredited EMT school program. During this time, an EMT is taught how to deal with basic medical emergencies and trauma. Through classroom and practical education, the BLS provider becomes proficient in trauma care, cardiac and stroke care, CPR, advanced first aid, child birth, and basic medication administration. These skills allow a BLS provider to stabilize a patient until ALS care arrives, and/or until a patient is transported to a hospital for further medical care.

Attending an airport rescueTo become a Paramedic and be certified in Advanced Life Support (ALS), one must first complete an EMT/BLS level of training, followed by two years of college level courses including College Math, English, and Human Sciences. After prerequisites have been completed, one can apply for a Paramedic program. The training gained in Paramedic school expounds on EMT/BLS school. Skills learned include aggressive cardiac life support, pediatric life support, severe trauma, and many other life-threatening emergency medical conditions. Paramedics are also trained to start IVs, administer medications according to medical director, and perform advanced airway management. An ALS trained Paramedic is responsible for managing the emergency medical scene according to protocol, and for directing operations inside of the medical transport unit en route to the hospital.

American Heart Association Heart Ready Award

Recognizing that coronary artery disease is America's #1 Killer, advanced defibrillators are standard on our ALS units and over 50 have been deployed to our Basic Life Support units, staff vehicles and fire department facilities. This preparation has been recognized as the Department was awarded the American Heart Association's HEARTREADY Award .

Helping Hugs Program

When young children have suffered trauma from fire related injuries, medical emergencies, or accidents, department members will give the child a small stuffed animal for comfort. This helps to ease fear and anxiety the child may be experiencing due to the emergency situation.

Other Areas

Logistics & Prevention


The Logistics Division supports the mission of the Tallahassee Fire Department by providing support services for fire suppression, hazardous material, and rescue operations. This support includes:

  • Maintaining and supplying personnel with uniforms and protective equipment such as helmets, coats, pants, boots, and gloves
  • Management, maintenance, and stocking of 21 department facilities
  • Management of all department fire apparatus as well as support vehicles
  • Management and maintenance of all department technology needs
  • Management of the department’s Special Operations which include Hazardous Materials Task Force 2 Team, Urban Search and Rescue Task Force 7 Team and the Airport Operations for the Tallahassee International Airport.


Each year, the personnel within Prevention interact with more than 2500 local businesses and places of assembly, including schools and churches, to implement and administer fire safety measures for the public as well as the employees who work in these establishments within our communities. Our inspectors assess and monitor each building for compliance with all life safety and current NFPA fire codes.

During an inspection, TFD will evaluate whether conditions at a business site are safe or if there are issues that are liable to cause a fire, which would result in unnecessary endangerment of lives and property. If these conditions do exist, TFD will advise the business immediately and consult with the owner/manager or designee about correcting these problems in a reasonable timeframe so the business will be safer and in compliance with fire codes.

Prevention also oversees the fulfillment of the department's home fire safety program with the free install of smoke detectors to elderly and low-income citizens. Public education and outreach regarding home fire safety is another responsibility of Prevention. This programming mainly includes fire safety presentations at public events and local civic groups as well as an annual Fire Prevention Week community event in October.

Update Your Emergency Information

Property managers and business owners can now update their emergency contact information and gate codes by using our online form. This will ensure our emergency personnel and first responders have the most accurate information and can be able to respond quickly and efficiently should the need arise.

Prevention Tips

Other Areas

Human Resources

The Tallahassee Fire Department is looking for hard-working, caring, professional individuals who desire to work in the rewarding and challenging profession of Fire/EMS.

Become a Firefighter

About TFD

Tallahassee's oldest fire department

(Pictured left to right - John McCollum, Thomas Pinkney Coe and L. C. Tully Sr. - Horses are Dick and Jack)

The mission of the Tallahassee Fire Department is to provide for the safety and welfare of our community and our members through prevention, preparation and protection.

The City of Tallahassee's Fire Department has been fighting fires and responding to emergencies for more than 100 years. While Tallahassee developed as a city, firefighting was a community effort ranging from "bucket brigades" to hand and horse-drawn wagons. In 1868, the first volunteer fire company was established in the city. Volunteer fire companies came and went until in September of 1902, the Tallahassee Volunteer Fire Company was formed. In May of 1930 its named changed to Tallahassee Fire Department. With this came six paid firefighters and six volunteer firefighters who were paid only for drilling and responding to a fire. In March of 1915 the first motorized fire truck, an American LaFrance engine, was purchased for the sum of $8,000 and placed in service. In December of that year, all five fire horses (Tom, Jerry, Dick, Jack, Jake) were sold for one dollar each.

Fire prevention has been a large part of the fabric of the City of Tallahassee. In 1843, the city council enacted an ordinance that required all buildings in downtown Tallahassee to be constructed of fire resistive material. This was in response to the "Great Fire of 1843" that destroyed more than 90 structures in the downtown business district. The fire started in the Hotel Washington located on the SE corner on S. Monroe Street and St. Augustine Street. In less than 3 hours it spread north, all the way to Park Avenue where its Northward progress stopped. Unfortunately, the fire destroyed most of the buildings on the East side of Monroe Street to Calhoun Street and on the West side of Monroe Street to Adams Street. As a result, many items in the local newspapers at the time warned citizens of the dangers of defective flues and chimneys which created sparks on roofs. Because of this, it was recommended that ladders were to be readily available at all residences so neighbors could possibly put out a fire with a bucket of water.

Firefighting, fire prevention and responses to all types of emergencies have grown extensively in the last 100 years. Today TFD has 16 stations serving and protecting about 702 square miles of incorporated and unincorporated land in Tallahassee and Leon County and approximately 292,000 people. The department is comprised of 284 full-time certified firefighters, 260 of whom respond to over 28,000 incidents annually and 24 whom are on staff. In addition, 17 general support employees provide a variety of administrative support.

The face of firefighting is changing constantly. In Tallahassee's recent past, most calls were for fires, predominantly resulting from kitchen accidents, chimney sparks and arson. Now the department faces a multifaceted response requirement that is daunting, to say the least. Thirty-two percent of current emergency calls are for emergency medical services (EMS). To field approximately 15,000 EMS calls annually, TFD provides the largest non-hospital-based medical response force from Jacksonville to Pensacola. In the face of a major medical emergency in the community, TFD will be the first responder.

But, above and beyond the medical response mission of the department, TFD has trained its staff to respond to such specialized needs as arson investigation, structure collapse, high-angle rescue, extrication, search and rescue, and hazardous materials. TFD personnel review all new and existing commercial construction plans, and they also conduct fire safety inspections of these occupancies to ensure that the construction is in accordance with the approved plans. Additionally, TFD works with the county and state agencies and assumes the lead role for the city in planning ahead for and responding to man-made and natural disasters.

TFD has a long and distinguished history of responding to the public safety needs of the city and Leon County and other surrounding counties. The Department enthusiastically accepts this challenge. TFD continues to plan how to best serve and protect citizens for the next 100 years.


Records requests, as well as inquiries regarding past property inspections, should be directed to

Fire Stations

Station 1 Station 6 Station 11
Station 2 Station 7 Station 12
Station 3 Station 8 Station 13
Station 4 Station 9 Station 14
Station 5 Station 10 Station 15
    Station 16
TFD Cadet Program
TEAM - Mental Health Response Unit
Fire Education

Additional Forms and Information

Chief of Fire Gene Sanders

Chief Sanders

Chief Gene Sanders was born and raised in Tallahassee, Florida. Growing up on the southside of Tallahassee in the Orange Blossom Heights neighborhood, Sanders attended Pineview Elementary School and Nims Middle School before graduating from Rickards High School. He has been married to his wife, Valencia, for almost 24 years, and together they are the proud parents of three children.

Chief Sanders began his formal employment with the Tallahassee Fire Department in 1997. During his tenure, he has held the positions of Firefighter, Driver/Operator, Lieutenant, Captain, Battalion Chief, Division Chief and Deputy Chief.

From 2015 to 2017, Sanders served in Fire Prevention as the department's Fire Marshal. While serving in that position, Sanders wrote and developed a grant program regarding smoke alarms and led neighborhood engagement efforts in partnership with Red Cross to help more households gain access to these life saving devices.

Sanders most recently served as Deputy Chief of Operations, overseeing the daily operations of TFD, including the Emergency Medical Services and Training divisions. He also managed TFD's Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) Task Force 7 and Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT) Task Force 2. In addition, he served as program coordinator for the State Homeland Security Grant Program and served as the Region 2 Coordinator for the Statewide Emergency Response Plan. In this role, he coordinated emergency assistance operations at the regional level, providing for the deployment of resources into affected areas. He has led multiple special operation deployments in both USAR and HAZMAT, including TFD's assistance at both the Surfside building collapse and Hurricane Ian response and recovery.

Sanders holds an Associate of Science degree in Fire Science and a bachelor's degree in Fire Department Administration. He is a State Certified Emergency Medical Technician, Fire Officer II, Fire Safety Inspector, Fire Investigator, HAZMAT Technician, Fire Service Instructor III and Live Fire Instructor.

Born and raised on the southside of Tallahassee, Chief Sanders has more than 25 years of service and experience with the Tallahassee Fire Department.