Posts Tagged Alton gets ISO Class 3

Evanston Fire Department history (more)

More Evanston Fire Department history and apparatus details from Phil Stenholm:

1924 Seagrave 85-ft TDA (Truck 1) at Fire Station #1 on Lake Street circa 1950 :

1924 Seagrave 85' aerial in Evanston IL

Bill Friedrich collection

The five new Pirsch rigs (Truck 21, Truck 22, Engine 21, Squad 21, and Engine 25) lined-up L-R at Fire Station #1 on Lake Street circa 1952: 

Evanston Fire Department history - vintage Peter Pirsch & Sons fire engines

Bill Friedrich collection

1951 Pirsch 85′ TDA (Truck 21 1951-68 and then Reserve Truck 23 1969-79) at Fire Station #3 on Central Street when it was the reserve truck in the 1970’s:

Evanston FD Reserve Truck 23

Bill Friedrich photo

1952 Pirsch 85-ft TDA (Truck 22 1952-79) after it was refurbished in 1969: 

Evanston FD Truck 22

Bill Friedrich photo

1968 Pirsch Senior 100-ft TDA as Truck 22 in the 1980’s (was Truck 21 1969-79) 

Evanston FD Truck 22

Bill Friedrich photo

1968 GMC / Pirsch tractor (ex-Aurora,CO) pulling refurbished 1952 Pirsch 85-ft ladder & trailer (Reserve Truck 23 in the 1980’s) 

Evanston FD Truck 21

Bill Friedrich photo


1949 Seagrave 1000 GPM pumper (was Engine 21 1949-1952, then Engine 22 1952-66, then Reserve Engine 26 at Station #5 1966-70)  It was sold to a private individual (Stuart Trock) for use as a party & parade vehicle in 1970 (it was only 21 years old when it was sold). It was was kept in very good condition by Trock and it was in the Evanston 4th of July Parade every year back in the 1970’s and 80’s. 

Evanston Fire Department history

Warren Redick photo

1937 Seagrave 750 GPM pumper (one of two identical pumpers purchased by  Evanston at that time after voters passed a bond issue). It was Engine 3 (later Engine 23) 1938-57 and then it was Reserve Engine 27 at Station #3 1958-70.

Evanston Fire Department history

Warren Redick photo

1937 Seagrave Service 65-ft aerial-ladder truck that was a front-line rig (Truck 2) at Station  #1 1937-1952, and then it became Truck 23 at Station #3 1955-62 (in front-line service), before finally going into reserve (still known as “Truck 23”) 1963-69.  

Evanston Fire Department history

Warren Redick photo

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Alton FD improves ISO rating

The has an article about the Alton Fire Department improving their ISO rating:

ALTON — Despite a shorter firefighter roster, the city’s fire chief’s efforts are causing Alton’s insurance rating to improve this fall, which may positively affect the cost of premiums.

“The city of Alton’s Insurance Services Office (ISO) Public Protection Classification (PPC) rating has been improved to a Class 3, effective October 1st,” from a Class 4, Fire Chief Bernie Sebold said. “The ISO rating assists insurance companies in determining property insurance premiums for residential and commercial structures. In order for ISO to determine the PPC rating, they evaluate the fire agency’s dispatching capabilities, water supply system and fire department operations.”

Sebold said people may want to contact their insurance agents regarding the forthcoming ISO upgrade.

“I would encourage Alton residents and business owners to contact their respective insurance carriers and advise them of the ISO rating change that takes effect October 1st so that they may possibly enjoy a lower insurance premium,” he said. “When the rating changed from a Class 3 to a Class 4, we had several residents and local insurance agents notify the Fire Department that residential rates increased approximately $85 to $100 a year, depending on the insurance carrier.”

ISO rates run from Class 1 to 10, with Class 1 being the highest.

“Of the 2,408 fire departments in Illinois, there are only 144 with an ISO Class 3 rating,” he said.

Sebold said there are seven Illinois departments with a Class 1 rating and 56 with a Class 2 rating.

“In the United States, there are 47,242 departments, with only 1,998 departments that are a Class 3,” another 61 with Class 1 ratings, and 592 with a Class 2 rating, he said.

“There were two areas that were significantly changed in the Fire Department,” Sebold said. “One was to include more officer training and multi-fire company drills, and two was to have East Alton respond to all working structure fires in Alton.”

While Alton firefighters have undergone regular, monthly drills for many years, Sebold said in order to address ISO concerns about training, he and Harris changed the focus — or purpose — of the exercises as part of the improvement plan.

“We increased the number of drills and changed the areas we are drilling in,” Sebold said.

Manpower was the other ISO-cited deficiency.

With Alton’s department down to 48 firefighters, Sebold enlisted the East Alton Fire Department to automatically respond to structure fires in Alton, and vice versa, so as to increase number of responders to a call.

Sebold said ISO normally evaluates cities once every 10 years, but it had been 12 years since the last evaluation before the office evaluated Alton five years ago. That evaluation resulted in the downgrade from a Class 3 rating to Class 4.

“During the summer of 2008, ISO visited the city of Alton for its first evaluation since 1996,” the chief said. “(ISO) determined that the PPC rating would go from a 3 to a 4, citing deficiencies in manpower responding to fires and lack of training in specific areas. When I was appointed fire chief in April 2012, one of my primary goals was to decrease the Fire Department’s ISO rating. ISO was contacted and instructed us that we would have to present one full year of new data, and that they would be happy to re-evaluate the Fire Department in May 2013, per our request.”

Thanks Chris

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