PASADENA (CBSLA) — For the first time in the department’s 133-year history, an all-female Pasadena Fire Department crew rode together on Engine 34.
The city of Pasadena posted a photo of Station 34’s Tuesday crew, which was not a permanent staffing move, but a definite sign of progress.
Fire stations are required to be staffed with a captain, an engineer and two firefighters. It just so happened that Tuesday’s staffing had four women at the right rank.
“We actually have females that have been promoted within the department enough to fill the seats so that we could put a complement of all female firefighters on an engine company,” Pasadena Fire Engineer Christina Terrazas told CBSLA Tuesday.
The Pasadena Fire Department is staffed with 150 firefighters, eight of whom are women. That puts the department at 5% women, above the national average of 4% for career women firefighters.
“I have a year left on the job, and I’m like, ‘before I leave I’m gonna make sure I have an all female crew,’ and it just happened today,” Pasadena Fire Capt. Tricia Rodriguez said.
Rodriguez joined the department in 1994, and was one of just three women in the department at the time.
Tuesday’s situation is not permanent. It came about because the four were all on overtime for a single 24-hour shift.
“The guys get to experience that every day, and as much as we enjoy working with them and they love working with us, it’s really nice to enjoy this experience today,” Terrazas said.
The Los Angeles Fire Department runs a fire camp specifically for young girls that it uses to try and recruit them into the department later on. The Pasadena Fire Department reportedly planned to begin a similar program this year as well.