The Greensboro Fire Department is a Class I, Internationally Accredited fire department. The Department has maintained its Class I rating with the most recent evaluation effective on April 1, 2013.
ISO CLASS I
The National Insurance Services Office (ISO) collects information on municipal fire protection efforts in more than 44,000 fire response jurisdictions throughout the United States. In each community, ISO analyzes the relevant data using its Fire Suppression Rating Schedule (FSRS). It then assigns a Public Protection Classification (PPC) from 1 to 10. Class 1 represents exemplary public protection and Class 10 indicates the area's fire suppression program doesn't meet ISO's minimum criteria.
By classifying a community's ability to suppress fires, ISO helps the community evaluate its public fire protection services. The program provides an objective, countrywide standard that helps fire departments in planning and budgeting for facilities, equipment, and training. And by securing lower fire insurance premiums for communities with better public protection, the PPC program provides incentives and rewards for communities that choose to improve their fire fighting services.
Fire Accreditation International
The Greensboro Fire Department has received Accredited Agency status with the Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI) for meeting the criteria established through the CFAI’s voluntary self-assessment and accreditation program. The Greensboro Fire Department is one of 150 agencies to achieve Internationally Accredited Agency status with the CFAI and the Center for Public Safety Excellence Inc. (CPSE)
The CFAI convened in Denver, Colorado in August 2012. Twenty-eight fire/rescue agencies were represented by their Chief, Accreditation Manager, City/Elected Officials and their CFAI Peer Team Leader. The Greensboro Fire Department was represented by Fire Chief Gregory Grayson and Assistant Chief Chris Bowman, accreditation manager. During 12 hours of deliberations, 13 agencies received their Accredited Agency Status, three of which are Department of Defense fire agencies, and 13 received Reaccredited Agency Status, while two received Deferral Status. CFAI Commissioners voted unanimously to approve Greensboro Fire's Accreditation through 2017.
Fire/EMS representatives received direct and challenging questions from CFAI Commissioners before a vote was taken. "This process embodies a pursuit of excellence within the fire industry; measure each and every aspect of your organization and benchmark your findings towards continuous quality improvement. We are seeing more and more organizations who meet these industry challenges and institutionalize the core values of accreditation into how their agencies are managed, and for that the Commission remains proud to refer to them as internationally accredited fire departments," said Chief Allan Cain (Cary, NC), CFAI chairman.
CFAI is dedicated to assisting the fire and emergency service agencies worldwide in achieving excellence through self-assessment and accreditation in order to provide continuous quality improvement and the enhancement of service delivery to their communities. The CFAI process is voluntary and provides an agency with an improvement model to assess their service delivery and performance internally, and then works with a team of peers from other agencies to evaluate their completed self-assessment.
Accreditation is valid for five years and this is the fourth time since 1997 the Greensboro Fire Department has achieved this honor. To be recommended for accreditation, a fire department must complete a self assessment of the department. The assessment encompasses 10 major categories which are further divided into 43 criteria with more than 258 performance indicators, ranging from response time benchmarking, training, resource deployment, public education and more. Along with this assessment, the department must also compile a strategic plan and a risk hazard assessment.
There are more than 25,000 established and listed fire departments in the US and less than 1 percent of public, non-military fire departments hold the distinction of being accredited. This places the Greensboro Fire Department among the top half percent of fire departments that have been able to achieve this accomplishment. This continuous improvement process ensures that residents are receiving accountable, credible, professional urban fire and rescue services that meet and/or exceed current fire industry standards.
Other fire departments from NC that went before the Commission were Wilson Fire Department, Monroe Fire Department, and Camp Lejeune Fire Department.
Accredited fire departments in NC now include Asheville, Camp Lejeune, Cary, Charlotte, Durham, Fayetteville, Fort Bragg, Gastonia, Greensboro, Jacksonville, Monroe, Morrisville, Rocky Mount, Stony Point, and Wilson.