By Ryan Kunitzer for The Island Connection
The St. John’s Fire District is proud to announce the department has improved their ISO rating from a 3/9 to a 2/2y. The Insurance Services Office (ISO) is an organization that independently evaluates municipal fire protection efforts in communities throughout the United States. ISO analyzes the data using its Fire Suppression Rating Schedule and then assigns a rating number. The department previously had a split rating of 3/9.
Residents of unincorporated John’s Island, Kiawah Island, and Seabrook Island improved their rating from a Class 3 to a Class 2. Residents of Wadmalaw Island improved their rating from a Class 9 to a Class 2y. The new rating will go into effect on August 1, 2018.
“The St. John’s Fire District is very proud that our work is being recognized with an improved rating,” said Fire Chief Colleen Walz. “We consider this a testament to the hard work and contributions in all levels of our organization to reducing fire injuries and loss through firefighting and fire prevention education.”
The ISO ratings process involves a periodic, detailed analysis of all fire department operations, including fire suppression capabilities, community risk reduction and fire prevention efforts, available equipment, and the distribution of emergency response vehicles. The evaluation includes a review of key supporting elements and partnerships such as those with the Charleston County Consolidated Dispatch for 911 services and the available water supply and hydrant systems.
The program provides an objective nationwide standard that helps fire departments in planning and budgeting for facilities, equipment, and training and provides a tool for insurance companies to measure the expected performance and capabilities of the areas fire response forces. Insurance companies use rating information to help establish fair premiums for fire insurance, generally offering lower premiums in communities with better protection. Class 2 is the second highest class awarded on a scale of 1 through 10.