|Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Receives ISO Class 1 Rating|
|By Captain II Greg Hunter|
|October 30, 2014|
After months of data collection, analysis, and testing, the Insurance Services Office, Inc., (ISO) has given Fairfax County a Public Protection Classification (PPC) of 01/1Y, the highest rating in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
The PPC Program reviews the fire prevention and overall fire suppression capabilities of communities. The Fire Suppression Rating Schedule (FSRS) considers three main areas of the community's fire suppression system: emergency communications, fire department (including operational considerations), water supply, and community risk reduction (fire prevention, fire safety education, and fire investigations).
The PPC plays a vital role in calculating and underwriting insurance premiums for residents, property owners, and businesses located in Fairfax County. Most insurance companies use PPC information as an integral part of deciding what businesses to underwrite, what types of coverage to offer, and overall premium costs.
The PPC is critical to both the community and the fire and rescue department. With an improved PPC, residents and businesses may receive lower insurance premiums, and departments receive valuable benchmarks, helping to measure program effectiveness, and plan for future improvements.
According to Fire Chief Richie Bowers, "the residents, business owners, and visitors of Fairfax County, along with all the personnel of the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department, will all benefit immensely from the improved ISO rating. The investments that have been made in the past, and the investments that will continue to be made in the future, will pay great dividends for all. This goal was part of the department's strategic plan and we're very proud to have accomplished this challenging objective."
The 01 fire suppression rating applies to all urban and suburban areas of the county. The 1Y represents an 8b rating for more rural areas of the county. The 01 rating applies to properties within five road miles of a fire and rescue station and within 1,000 feet of a fire hydrant.
Fairfax County's first and only ISO evaluation was in 1984, resulting in a 03/09 split rating. Again, the 03 corresponds to urban/suburban areas, and 09 based on rural areas.
The new PPC is effective in February 2015.