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  1. #1
    640SATFD
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Question A Quint and what you really get???

    From what I've read so far you folks out there are very smart when it comes to new apparatus.

    My questions are with respect to what do you gain from a 75' quint that you might lose going away from a 1500gpm custom pump?

    In the very near future (perhaps next year) the chief is looking to replace our 2nd Engine with a new Custom 1500 gpm Pump with 1000 gallon water capacity and 1500' of 4" LDH. ISO rating are right around the corner and it's almost a guarenttee they'll ask to see a ladder truck. My concern is would it be better to spend the extra buck and go for the Quint today and eliminate one truck tommorrow (we have a space constraint to add to this with respect new pump this year and a ladder in 3 years).

    More importantly how do you sell a quint to ISO? Is it a pump a ladder or 50/50?

    Our department is located in Northwest Vermont. 30 paid-on call currently running a 1995 4900 International 1250 Central States Engine (first out). 2nd Pump is a 1975 1500 gpm Custom Maxium (4" LDH supply truck). These trucks see 150 calls a year. Backed up by three 2000 gallon capacity tanker on medium duty gas chassis. Our other Responsiblities are Medium Rescue to 5 surrounding Communities; running Hurst tools (150 calls a year) and Moible Cascade to 7 communites totalling about 20 calls a year.

    Any insight or recommmendations would be appreciated with respect to Quint vs. Custom Pump


  2. #2
    SBrooks
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    I'm certainly not the best at this, but I'll give it a shot...

    ISO determines your needed fire flow, based on the construction and exposures of say your five biggest non sprinklered buildings (buildings must be certified to count as sprinklered).

    ISO determines the number of pumpers you need based on this flow. To get full credit for the pumpers, they must meet certain hose, pump, and equipment requirements...none of which are hard to meet, eg. 1200' hose, 750? pump, 300 tank, specific equipment list. Additionally, your community is judged on what percent of its build up area is within 1.5 miles of a pumper.

    ISO also states that you need a service truck or a ladder truck for each response area, or rather that you are rated on the percent of your area that is within 2.5 miles of a ladder truck. They also have some method for determining how many you need, but if you have none now, you probably only need one. I don't have my FIre suppression rating schedule in front of me, but I think you only need a ladder truck if you have buildings that meet certain criteria such as: over 3 stories, needed fire flow greater than 3500, etc. Otherwise you only need a service truck.

    To get full credit for your service truck, you must meet certain ladder and equipment standards. If you need a ladder truck, it must be as tall as your tallest building, or 100' whichever is greater. It must have a ladder pipe, not necessarily prepiped though. You need the following ladders: 40' 35' 24' 20' 16'...I could be wrong about the 24' it might be a 28'. There is also an equipment list, but other than the ladders, it's not too hard...the only thing I remember now is that you need 10 salvage covers.

    ISO also has provisions for a combined engine-ladder company or a engine-service company. If you count this piece of equipment as an engine company, it's credit as a ladder company is halved. (So you'd need two, i guess) If you count it as a ladder company, you cannot count it as an engine. It can be counted as a reserve engine or a reserve truck.

    My read of this is: To get full credit for a truck (or service company) with one piece of apparatus, you should buy a truck...there aren't too many quints out there with the correct ladder complement. A $200K pumper and a $300K ladder will get you much more credit than a $500K quint. Also, nowhere in the ISO FSRS does it say or ask anything about the age of the apparatus...you don't have to buy a new one.

  3. #3
    S. Cook
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Also - go with a 100 footer, that's the max ISO will credit. If you go with a 75' and need a 100', you lose credit, but if you go with a 100' and need a 180' you won't.

  4. #4
    e33
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs down

    Scott..doesnt that seem silly to you, I sure think it does. I am still not sold that this ISO thing even makes sense..or is it just some wierd game.

  5. #5
    SBrooks
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    e33 I for one agree with you...most of the ISO requirements are way outdated, but it seems that it's one of the many times in life that it pays to know how to play the game. I have absolutely no data to back this up, but I'd bet that most of the urban / suburban departments with the highest ISO rating (Class 1) run traditional engine / ladder truck systems. (St. Louis is a notable exception).

  6. #6
    FFE3BFD
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Exclamation

    This is an actual excerpt from a letter from ISO.

    " These Classification Details and Improvement Statements were developed using the information obtained during our survey and consider that conditions remain the same. They refer only to the public protection rating classification and are not for property loss prevention or life safety purposes."

    To me this statment seems to contradict itself. How can you come up with a public protection rating without considering property loss or life safety???

    Sorry if I strayed from the original subject, but SBROOKS mentioned the ISO and he appeared to know what he was talking about. I personally think the whole ISO rating system is taken way to serious, and should not be used as a gauge to measure a dept's. abilities or tell you what type of apparatus you need.

    This is my opinion, and mine only.

  7. #7
    S. Cook
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Straying just a little more regarding ISO...

    I did a review for a local IAFF regarding their cities ISO rating, while the rating schedule may seem a little outdated, a firefigher in the Union put it perfectly. To paraphrase, he said:

    With the effect our ISO rate has on insurance ratings, we (the FD) can actually show a profit and/or loss, just like a business.

    Moral of the story - use the ISO rating schedule to your advantage. With our class 5, our mayor (and city council) knows his VFD saves his city taxpayers around 1.5 million a year in insurance rates (after the FDs 300k budget is taken out) and doesn't have a problem supporting purchases for the FD.

    [This message has been edited by S. Cook (edited November 28, 1999).]

  8. #8
    S. Cook
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    And I forgot to add, you can see a few pics of our new quint here

    http://www.gvfd.org/quint/quint.htm

  9. #9
    Rockies
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Unfortunately SB doesn't know what he is talking about when it comes to ISO. He tries to speak matter of factly but, he is short of facts. Syracuse NY Class 1 all quint FD.

    He says,

    "ISO determines the number of pumpers you need based on this flow. "

    Wrong! Response area, response outside of territory, local use and procedures

    "your community is judged on what percent of its build up area is within 1.5 miles of a pumper."

    Sure 2.4% of the rating. You pick a number you like better they are figuring 3 minute respose time it came from NFPA and other fire service leaders.

    "ISO also states that you need a service truck or a ladder truck for each response area"

    Wrong. No requirement for a truck, just the equipment make it to the scene.

    "you are rated on the percent of your area that is within 2.5 miles of a ladder truck."

    Sure 1.6 points out of 100 points if you even need one.

    " if you have none now, you probably only need one."

    Wrong. What you do and what the standard says have no relationship.

    " it must be as tall as your tallest building,"

    Wrong. There are no musts, you get credit or percentage of credit for whatever you own.

    " or 100' whichever is greater. It must have a ladder pipe, not necessarily prepiped though. "

    Wrong NO rules on musts, you get credit for whatever you own.


    " It can be counted as a reserve engine or a reserve truck."

    Wrong It is either in service or a reserve not both and half of something else.

    "there aren't too many quints out there with the correct ladder complement."

    Wrong Almost all full size ladders, sutphens, e-ones, KME's, pierce, seagraves, LTI's Grunmans, aerial scopes, etc

    A $200K pumper and a $300K ladder will score more

    Wrong Not if one is not needed.

    "e33 Scott..doesnt that seem silly to you, I sure think it does. I am still not sold that this ISO thing even makes sense..or is it just some wierd game."

    Didn't Scotts FD just get permission to buy 10 new rigs because of ISO??? Got your ladder and all the other stuff due to ISO?

    "most of the ISO requirements are way outdated,"

    Such as?

    " I'd bet that most of the urban / suburban departments with the highest ISO rating (Class 1) run traditional engine / ladder truck systems."

    "Syracuse, almost all the Nevada fd's, almost all the So California depts, LA, FL fd's, SC's fd, IL fd, Plano TX fd, fd 21 out of 31. Is that most?

    " but SBROOKS mentioned the ISO and he appeared to know what he was talking about."

    Sorta

    "I personally think the whole ISO rating system is taken way to serious, and should not be used as a gauge to measure a dept's. abilities or tell you what type of apparatus you need."

    Spoken like a place with a lousy rating.

    If you don't know the facts why state them like you do?

  10. #10
    SBrooks
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Hey rockies, who are you? Everyone can find out exactly who I am and that I am exactly who I say I am. You're profile contains no information, just a reference to Rattlesnake RFPD...but you sound just like K A, ECBURT, Mike C, and Larry Stevens. I'm not sure, but I'd find it really easy to believe that you are one and the same, and so pathetically in need of self-validation that you're willing to create internet alter-egos to agree with yourself when no one else will.

    The information I posted is right out of the ISO Fire Suppression Rating Schedule, sorry if I was unclear in my diction. I should have written "must have in order to recieve full credit" instead of "must". My apologies.

    As for Syracuse, i have several friends who work up there...had dinner at 'dinosours bbq' last week with a LT. While all their maxi pumpers have telesquirts, they are used as traditional engines.

    What page of the FSRS shows how many pumpers you need based on response area, besides the 1.5mi rule?

    If you read my paragraph starting "ISO also has provisions for..." you'll note that i mentioned that 2 quints can count as 2 engines and a ladder. I apologize for not explicitly stating that 2 quads can count as 2 engines and a service company.

    "there aren't too many quints out there with the correct ladder complement" There aren't. Depending on you're community you may need up to 5 long ladders, most quints come with the laughable NFPA min standard of 35,24,2x16,10,12 (whoops, sorry, they just reduced it again).

    "A $200K pumper and a $300K ladder will score more" as one engine and one truck, as opposed to one engine and one half a truck. Again you're right, if one is not needed you wont get credit for it, but that is a trivial argument. I apologize for giving the firefighters on this topic the benefit of the doubt regarding their intelligence...it hadn't occurred to me that they might not figure that one out.

    ISO rules outdated? Please tell me when they were updated. Perhaps I should have restated this: The ISO schedule does not rate a fire department for what a fire department needs to do, except move water and carry equipment. There is one performance standard, and that is to move water for outside streams. By the schedule, you could never set foot in a burning building, never have to search for a victim, and never save anything but the foundation, and have a class 1 department. You just have to be able to save the exposures.

    IMHO 200gpm inside beats 2000gpm outside.

    As far as I can tell the ISO schedule is good for 1) a game you can play to get more from the money weasels 2) a drill to move water and 3) a decent ladder complement.

    Which of those department really use quints, and which of those department just use quints in a traditional system?

  11. #11
    SBrooks
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    For all, my department (Prince George's County, MD) has a class 3 rating, per our prevention division. We currently operate a completely traditional system with no quints. The County exec would like to buy 5 quints because they are cheaper than an engine and a ladder truck. The Career side of the department wants to buy them for other, political reasons. The volunteer side isn't buying any.

    Hey rockies how much money per homeowner could be saved going from a Class 3 to a Class 1?

  12. #12
    Rockies
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Hey rockies how much money per homeowner could be saved going from a Class 3 to a Class 1?

    PG county also offers a Class 9 in their entire rural, that is anything outside of 1000 feet of a fire hydrant. Depends where yu live but public informaton on the web indicates as much as 22%.

  13. #13
    e33
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs down

    ISO ratings dont mean you know how to fight fires..it means you play good games. Dont get me wrong, I think its great that you theoretically have better fire protection and that you can save $$ and get new equipment...but a class 1 dept can still suck *** and be a class 1. Id like to see my FD drop a few numbers and provide better service..we will see. Still..its a game and you have an interest vested in it somehow..just like you have an interest vested in Rattlesnakes new rigs, and Fallons rigs, and Granbury's rigs and Mason's rigs. My friend, we are not dumb..dont play games please..I do not respect that. I cannot understand what the big secret is..we must all be dumb out here in the east..i guess its the leather helmets.

  14. #14
    Halligan84
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Must be big money in ISO consulting.. that would be one reason to defend it so much.

  15. #15
    FFE3BFD
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs down

    Spoken like a place with a lousy rating.

    If you don't know the facts why state them like you do?

    Rock,
    The last two lines of your post are the best. Why don't you practice what you preach.(For your info it's a Class 2) Even after all your ranting and raving, you still didn't answer my question.

    How can you come up with a public protection rating without considering property loss or life safety???




  16. #16
    SBrooks
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Rocco:

    No idea what PGs rural class is, not really relevant to me, as i always see hydrants every 200-400'. However being between Washington DC and Baltimore, I'd hazard a guess that less than 1% of the county's building value (Since that's all ISO seems to cares for) is in a rural area.

    Also it is my understanding that many, if not most, fire insurance carriers offer no reduction in insurance rates for areas going from a class 3 to a class 2 or class 1.

  17. #17
    Halligan84
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    To get back to the original question, the quint will be a better deal for you if it is set up to work. Granbury's looks like a pretty nice rig, more water than I have ever seen on a single axle quint. It might take some work, but if avoiding one of these tandem axle monsters is a priority you should be able to get a great quint which gets credit for both.

  18. #18
    S. Cook
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Thanks for the good words Hal84. One thing though (and it's my fault) you can't tell, (because of the obstructions and my photo editing) in the photos, but it's a tandem. It's about 43' long total, but has a pretty good curb turning radius of about 45' and a wall to wall of about 54'.

    Back to the original post -

    640SATFD you state that it's almost a gurantee that ISO will want you to have an aerial. Are you due your next rating or are you requesting it?

    What's changed since your last rating?

    Do you have 5 building 35' or taller?

    Do you have 5 buildings that need 3500gpm or more of fireflow using ISO's formula and that aren't properly sprinklered?

    Do you have any combination of 5 buildings taller than 35' and need 3500gpm (e.g 2 >35' and 3 >3500gpm)?

    Can you pump from hydrants and/or shuttle the 3500gpm required to start with?

    You sell ISO your quint is based on what you need. If you need an aerial and it's properly equipped, you sell it as a full aerial and half an engine. If you need an engine and you have an aerial, sell it as full engine and half an aerial.

    And to hit on the ISO comments -

    The Texas Dept. of Insurance doesn't specify a break from 2 to 1 it's up to the carriers. But a 3 to 2 is a TDI recommended 27% break.

  19. #19
    SBrooks
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    SCook - nice looking rig. That is the best hosebed i've seen on a real aerial. I've wondered why no one has pulled something like that berfore, glad to see someone had one made. Dept next door just got a quality (if i saw your pics correctly) and they love it.

  20. #20
    S. Cook
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    yep it's a Quality, our 2nd one. The first is an engine.

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