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  1. #1
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    Question Finding ISO Department Data

    Fellow Fire Planners,

    I need your help again. Can a few of you give me direction in find important ISO Data (PPC, Local Batch Reports, Insurers Rate reduction as for PPC).

    Also where can I find Insurance Rate Data based on geographical location and Public Protection Classification.

    This information is very important to my department. Municipal Leaders are threatening to cut Capital Funding this year and I need to explain our department and it's complex challenges. I would also like to give them a lesson in Fire Insurance Savings as a result of Community Fire Protection Quality.

    Any help you can give would be greatly appreciated Dept. wide!

    Vermont is the geo-location.

    Respectfully,
    GB


  2. #2
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    Default

    The ISO website, www.isomitigation.com should have addresses and phone numbers to get the info you're looking for.

  3. #3
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    Garth,

    Bobby might have to get involved with ISO for very specific information on your department. I was told that the Chief or Political Official had to make requests for info. Hopefully that policy has changed.

  4. #4
    MembersZone Subscriber jaybird210's Avatar
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    Nope, no policy change from ISO yet.

    We're just starting the process of re-evaluating. All requests for Batch Reports, Classification and Improvement Statements, etc. must come from the Chief or his boss on Deptartment letterhead.

    Also, try going to www.isoslayer.com and download his book. Very helpful.
    Omnis Cedo Domus

    www.hinckleyfd.org

  5. #5
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    Default Thanks for the words of wisdom; keep the info coming

    Guys,

    Thanks for the info. I was able to contact my regional office and get our rating over the phone. The Batch Reporting System was down so I had NO LUCK with that. As far as the last rating report I think that maybe a little out of date to help us.

    Anyone re-evalutated in the last year or so let me know your expierence with it.

    Our Municipality leaders have decided to squeeze OUR budget this year for more than one reason. I will admit some of this is our fault for not presenting the data and being prepared to show them what they get for each dollar spent. Although being asked to go from two Engines to One is not acceptable to the community not to mention the department. This is why you have the current push to set the record straight. ISO is just one concrete way to show the data. Our ISO rating is less than great but still remains in the middle of the pack for the area. I hope to show the additional dollar amounts spent if ratings change (better or worse).

    I have read Larry Stevens guide to ISO it is very very good. It has helped me greatly.

    My next question is who will do all the preparation work prior to ISO re-evaluating us. It's a must do but I can see that few hands will raise for this assignment.

    Thanks for the help
    GB

  6. #6
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    640SATFD:

    We’re going through our re-rating right now, not too far from you.

    Once you get your batch report, make sure to check and make sure that all of your commercial properties are on there. Ours had only 9 of the 50 buildings that should have been on it. Be prepared to do some measuring and calculating.

    Good luck finding insurance rate data. Neither ISO nor the insurance companies like to tell you that.

    As a result of our re-rating work, things like apparatus purchases that weren’t scheduled for another 10 years are now on the drawing board. The new station that we’ve been asking for for 20 years is now being actively pursued. Requests for additional staffing are now being budgeted. The best part is that the town administrators are in full support of it, amid massive state budget cuts.

    We are a Class 6 rural department with NO hydrants. Our current plan calls for dropping our rating to a district wide Class 3. No hydrants. 40 square miles.

    Drop me a line if you’d like to discuss any of the rating work we’ve done. We’re happy to share information. Another area department has seen what we’ve done so far and they’re already jumping on the band wagon.

  7. #7
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    HFDCLanger

    How wide/long/shape is your district? How many stations? What water sources do you use/have?

  8. #8
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    neiowa:

    Our district is just over 40 square miles in a nearly perfect square, protected by one station. We have 60 designated water sources including ponds, lakes, cisterns, streams and rivers, all with dry hydrants installed.

    You can get a great rating if you follow our plan, but do yourselves a favor: don't waste your time or money on dry hydrants.

  9. #9
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    HFDCLanger,

    you mentioned not wating time or money on dry hydrants, how did you come to that conclusion? I am sincerely curious, my department is working towards reducing our rating, and we have no "water system". We use a combination of dry hydrants, underground tanks, and free flowing streams, and ponds.

    I am trying to get all the insight that I can on this so I can "prove it in" with the fellows that have been around for a while and don't like change. I would appreciate any info you have, and welcome any and all suggestions.

    If you can let me know what you meant by that, it may save us some time and money.

    Thanks

    hvfdrgpemt

    www.hancockvfd.com

  10. #10
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    Originally posted by HFDCLanger
    You can get a great rating if you follow our plan, but do yourselves a favor: don't waste your time or money on dry hydrants.
    Why do you say this? Our county just reduced ourselves from a 9/10 to a 7/10 (hey, it's something!). Our county is a rural, rectangular shape protected by 5 stations, and we use 72 dry-hydrants (on underground tanks, a river, streams, and ponds). We have a very, very small area protected by a hydranted system, but we rely on the dry hydrants for 99% of our water supply. Under the advise of ISO, we use a five-tanker shuttle to sustain our water supply, and this was a large contributing factor in getting our reduction.

    Just a thought....

  11. #11
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    Default

    go to www.iso.com you will find everything you ever wanted to know about iso


    thanks

  12. #12
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    Our rural area without fire hydrants is a Class 9 and 10. We are hoping mid March to get that lowered to a Class 1 or 2. As volunteers we are looking for simple ways to cover our 38 square mile district. We have very high fire flows 4000 gpm plus scattered all over. That is why we use Turbo Drafts instead of dry hydrants. You’d have to place 3 to 4 dry hydrants at ever water point. Flush, back flush and test them at draft twice a year for ISO and have them certified. We simply carry a turbo draft on each pumper and lift water up to 400 feet from the truck or 42 feet vertically.

    When you look at the best rural water supply fire departments All of the 3’s used Turbo Drafts. We’ve noticed only two of the rural water supply Class 4 departments use dry hydrants. Obviously it is not the way to go. Sure you can get a Class 7 with anything on earth, but the best FD’s avoid dry hydrants.

  13. #13
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    This may provide you with some insight.

    Some Dry Hydrant Advantages:

    -Have the capability to speed drafting operations when in perfect working order with the proper setup.

    -Eliminates immediate need to drill a hole in the ice during winter operations*

    *Note: holes will need to be cut soon after water is flowing to ensure proper air/water displacement/circulation.

    -Allows access to some previously inaccessible water sources*

    *With the introduction of the TurboDraft, which allows access to static water sources over 200 feet away, a dry hydrant that allows access to a water source 50 feet away is a small advantage by comparison.


    A Few Dry Hydrant Disadvantages:

    -Initial Cost – Installation costs add up quickly as you hydrant your district.

    -Legal Implications – User agreements with private property owners are often a hassle.

    -High Preventive Maintenance – Must be flushed and inspected twice a year and after every major rainstorm (particularly those on streams an rivers). Must be flow tested semi-annually as well, but separate from flushing. Finding manpower to visit each hydrant at least four times a year on top of calls, training, meetings, etc can be challenging and/or costly.

    -High Maintenance (Repair) - Dry hydrants are easy targets for vandals, snowplows, and careless drivers, as well as common victims of deep or unusual freezes (no snow, freeze-thaw-freeze, low water level, etc). The cost of repair can require a significant chunk to your operating budget.

    -Restricted Flow – Most standard dry hydrants rarely flow more than 1000gpm when new. Add debris and the like and you may find yourself with a district full of 500gpm hydrants after a few years.

    -Compatibility – If you want your mutual aid companies to be able to use your hydrants, make sure they have the proper adapters (6” double females, 4 ½”X6” adapters, etc).

    -Reliability – Air leaks, debris in the hydrant or other hydrant damage (cracked pipe, broken strainer, stripped thread) can render a hydrant useless and waste precious minutes on the fire ground. The likelihood of any or all of these problems with the standard dry hydrant system is enough of a disadvantage in itself.

    -Setup Time – As most of us know, hydrant spotting with hard suction hose (even lightweight, flexible hard suction) can be difficult and time consuming. With the typical dry-hydrant setup, the crews must:

    1. Properly spot the rig (this may take several attempts)

    2. Get out, climb up on the truck and remove the suction

    3. Remove the hydrant cap (if it hasn’t been stolen or lost….. yeah, yeah….that’s what those chains are for, right? Keep wishing) and remove the intake valve (pound it loose with a rubber mallet first)

    4. Connect the suction to the truck

    5. Dig out a double female adapter and connect it to the hydrant

    6. Connect the suction to the double female

    7. Pound on all of the connections

    8. Prime the pump

    9. Repeat 7 & 8 as many times as needed

    10. Finally put the pump in gear and flow water



    Bottom line: Set your rigs up with pre-connected squirrel tail suctions with floating strainers and foot valves, as well as a TurboDraft preconnect or two, and you will have a superior rural water delivery system much cheaper, faster, more versatile, higher-flowing, maintenance-free, and reliable than a whole district full of dry hydrants.


    If you still decide that dry hydrants are really the drafting method for you, follow these guidelines:

    -Use a minimum of 8” pipe for the hydrant.

    -All hydrants should use the same 6” thread. A major fire service magazine published an article by a regular contributor last year on the topic of dry hydrants. All of the points made in the article were either obvious or incorrect and misleading, including the recommendation to use 4 ½” thread on all dry hydrants. The reason behind this was that 4 ½” is a standard pressurized hydrant thread, and departments could use the same adapter for both. Please tell, how many departments out there besides FDNY still use hard suction for hydrant connections? Get with the times.

    The dry hydrants themselves are enough of a flow restriction. Don’t further restrict your flow by using 4 ½” thread, especially when most engines use 6” suction anyway.

    -The hydrants should be permanently equipped with Cam-Loc or Stortz drafting fittings to speed connections.

    If you are too stubborn to make this leap from the stupid tradition of using threaded hard suction couplings (when we’ve been using Stortz on LDH for decades), at least do one of the following (in order of preference): have each rig pack an extra length of hard suction equipped with female couplings on both ends (separate this length from the others to avoid confusion among the crews); store one length of hard suction with a double female pre-connected (this is not ideal because the double females are a common source of air leaks); or equip all hydrants with permanent, long-handle female swivels (the disadvantages of this being that it tends to be easier to connect a female suction coupling to a rigid male dry hydrant thread than vice versa, and also their increased cost and maintenance).

    -Consider using two 45 degree elbows instead of two 90s to minimize friction loss.

    -Consider using one or more permanently installed 6” TurboDrafts at the end of the hydrant (practically turns the hydrant into a pressurized hydrant). This would be ideal to install on a cistern at the entrance to short sub-division roads in rural areas. The first due engine confirms a working fire from the main road, drops a pair of supply lines at the end of the road, and secures a permanent water supply on arrival. On subdivision roads with adequate cul de sacs, installing the cistern halfway down the road would increase the coverage area.

    -Ensure mutual aid departments have proper adapters to use your hydrants.

    -Make sure hydrants are well-marked, protected, and kept clear of brush and other obstructions, as well as snow in the winter.

    -Get somebody who knows what they are doing to install (or oversee the installation of) the hydrants. This avoids common problems such as high hydrant heads, improper hydrant footing or strainer installation, etc.

    -Equip all apparatus with dual primers, gated 6” intakes, and a pre-connected 15-foot length of flexible 6” hard suction (with appropriate dry hydrant threads). This allows one person to pull up, get out and release the chicksan swivel lock, snap the suction into place on the dry hydrant, and quickly prime the line.

    -Inspect and flush all hydrants twice a year and after every rainstorm, as described above. Flow-test the hydrants once for every flushing, but at a different date.



    All this from a department that probably uses dry hydrants more than just about any other department in the US. Town-wide ISO Rural Class 6 since 1991 with nearly 60 dry hydrants in our 40 square mile district; absolutely no municipal water system.

    We're shooting for at least a Class 3 on our next rating with 50 commercial buildings in town and flows to 5,000gpm. Every rig will be equipped with squirrel tail suctions and Turbo Draft preconnects.


    P.S. - Don't try to copyright this - I know it's a book.

    CLanger@firehousemail.com

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