Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services

Welcome to the Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services!

We are a combination system of nearly nine-hundred career and volunteer providers operating from twelve stations across the County. The department is located between Baltimore City and the District of Columbia and provides and receives automatic aid to and from our surrounding partners in Prince George’s, Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Montgomery and Frederick counties.

The department is statutorily responsible for the administration of the affairs for the county in fire suppression and prevention, fire training, arson investigation, rescue services and emergency medical services.

The Office of Emergency Management Command within the Department of Fire & Rescue Services has the lead responsibility for county-wide emergency management planning, preparedness and response.

Every station has at least one engine and one paramedic unit assigned. Many of our stations also house vehicles such as ladder trucks, heavy duty rescue squads, brush trucks, foam and dry chemical units and water tankers. Career personnel work on a three (3) shift, twenty-four (24) hour rotating schedule. Our mission is to maintain a safe environment and high quality of life in Howard County by educating, protecting and serving our citizens, members and visitors.


New 2018 Maryland Smoke Alarm Law

The new Maryland Smoke Alarm law went into effect on January 1, 2018. This new state law is aimed at reducing home fire deaths. 

From the Office of the Maryland State Fire Marshal: Why is a sealed-in battery important? Nationally, two-thirds of all home fire deaths occur in homes with either no smoke alarm or no working smoke alarm, mainly due to missing or disconnected batteries. By sealing the battery inside the alarm, the unit becomes tamper-resistant and removes the burden from consumers to remember to change batteries, which in turn, will save lives. These sealed-in, long-life battery smoke alarms provide continuous protection for a decade, and national fire experts with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and National Association of State Fire Marshals (NASFM) recommend their use.

Smoke alarms should be located on every level of the home and outside the sleeping areas. And remember- keep bedroom doors closed when sleeping to help stop the spread of smoke and fire, which allows for more time to escape during an emergency. Every second counts.

Press release from the Office of the Maryland State Fire Marshall.

Mission Statement

To maintain a safe environment and high quality of life in Howard County by educating, protecting and serving our citizens, members and visitors.

Vision and Core Values


We will be a global model of a fully integrated combination volunteer and career fire, rescue, and emergency medical services organization, providing diversified services to promote life safety in our community.

Core Values

Recognizing the dedication and skill of all members, we will create and maintain an environment of individual safety, well-being, and trust. We are guided by: Service to Others, Integrity, Honesty, Accountability, Professionalism, Compassion, Respect, and Safety. Embracing and celebrating diversity has been a reason why Howard County residents enjoy a high quality of life. All members of the DFRS, career and volunteer, will continue their efforts to remove any obstacles that limit opportunities for personal goals to be achieved due to discrimination because of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age and disability.

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