As early as 2222 OTT during the very first year of the Union, Civil Defense was discussed at Assembly level, bit it was not until Emergency Response Act of 2999 , a Unioin wide federal level department was considered. All Civil Defense issues were dealt with by local authorities until then.
The act created the Union Civil Defense and Emergency Department , but it received very little attention and funding.
It was very low key and basically a small teasm writing and devising contingency plans. It all changed with the begin of the Union -Y'All war of 3572 -3590 . The need for a Union wide emergency response was suddenly at the very forefront of much needed services. The call for help from communities for help coping with the aftermath of Y'All ground assaults was overwhelming.
The Civil Defense department was put under the administrative control of the Office of Citizen Affairs . but under the direct control of the Assembly itself. Union Emergency and Crisis Management Department was redefined and received much needed funding and attention.
UECM is the only executive department under direct Assembly control.
The Continuation of Goverment was planned and organized, Union wide Emergency broadcast defined and created.
As part of this new efforts, the civilian emergency response units such as Sol Defense and other cathastrophe response organizations came under the umbrella of the Unionb Fire Department.
Union civil defense is the organized non-military effort to prepare Union citizens for military attack. It also included Emergency management and Union Space security .
The Union Fire Department responds to planet sized emergencies, such as xeno life form infestations, flaring suns, asteroid strikes, floods, space ship disasters, industrial spills and other events that affect a whole planet, station or other celestial real estate.
This Federal Service has specialized space ships, equipment and emergency assets to evacuate entire planets if necessary. They also respond to civilian space ship emergencies, provide towing, emergency fuel top up, first aid for injuries or assist in the case of disease.
The Union Fire Department can summon Hospital ships , Wurgus Sun / Planet Engineers or can call for the Union Army Corps of Planetary Engineering to provide fast emergency response to a wide variety of situations.
The Union Fire Department also provides training for local planet First Responders, tests and approves Fire suppression systems, First Aid and first Responder equipment ( To do this the UFD operates an Equipment testing and proving laboratory that issues the UFD Seal of Approval)
The UFD has an investigation division that provides forensic services to Union Police in cases of accidents, suspicious fires and accidents.
The UFD is a para military organization and its members wear uniform and are paid and financed by the Union. UFD members and ships are not armed 
Individuals serving with the UFD for at least 22 month comply with the Citizen Service Duty Requirement.
UFD HQ is on Pluribus , but their Main Depot, Training Grounds, Academy, Labs etc is on “Union Fire House” a planet in the Luyten 726-8 System
By Assembly decree every Union Section  must have a Union Fire Department. So far about 40 percent of Union Space Section ( Galaxy → Quadrant → Region → Section → Division → District). Equipment, Crew Size and facilities depend on the density of population in the Section.
The Fire Department has ships that are FTL capable, but are not calles ships. FD vessels are called Engines.
While it can operate at any civilian location in Union space, it's primary function is to provide training on new techniques to fight fires and deal with other non crime related emergencies. It also is responsible to ensure that facilities used by other federal organizations have the latest in fire detection, prevention and suppression equipment.
FD service is prestigious and members of the FD are perceived like Sports team heroes. The training is demanding and there are stringent BaPhy requirements in place as to who can and who can not serve.
 They do have equipment to sterilize, combat and terminate large scale bio infestations
 A Union “Space” Section is 400 x 400 x 400 Light Years – Travel Times at TL 8 counted in Days