History of the Woodbridge Fire District

On June 4, 1940, Samuel Sebastiani recognized the need to protect his winery in Woodbridge along with the township of Woodbridge from the ravages of fire. His son Larry Sebastiani was the manager of the winery who was directed by his father to organize a fire brigade.


            At the Sonoma winery a 1924 Graham Brothers Yellow Taxicab was converted into a small fire engine that Samuel Sebastiani sent to Woodbridge, becoming the first fire engine of the department.  It fought its last fire in 1972 returning from a parade. This fine fire apparatus has been retired and is still a part of the department’s inventory and is referred to as Johnny Popper.  

       

            The district is located in north central San Joaquin County of California approximately 45 miles south of the state capital of Sacramento.


            1942. The Woodbridge Fire District was officially formed consisting of approximately 30 square miles.


            1944. The fire district was enlarged to 64 square miles to provide fire protection to the surrounding rural area with the original fire station located in “old town.”


            1958. Woodbridge Fire recognized the need to for a new station which was financed by the Woodbridge Fire Fighters Association and is current the agency’s headquarters and Station 71.


            1966. A group of citizen from the southeast corner of the district approached the District Board of Directors regarding concerns for fire protection within the area which is approximately seven miles south of the headquarters station.


            1968. The construction of Station 72 was completed and was staffed.


             1996. Woodbridge Fire merged with the neighboring volunteer Forest Lake Fire District  to the north adding an additional 10 square miles creating Station 73. This enhanced fire protection to the area with a full time staffed fire station.


            2003. Woodbridge Fire merged with the neighboring Delta fire district to the west adding an additional 118 square miles, and  300 miles of water way in the San Joaquin Delta creating Station 74 and the need for Fire Rescue Boat 71.


            The mergers of the Forest Lake Fire District and Delta Fire District increased the response area to 192 square miles. This has increased the fire protection to the residents and businesses within the fire district by decreasing response times, adding two staffed fire stations for a total of four staffed stations 24/7, increasing the number of firefighters on duty and increasing available resources daily.