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  • How many firefighters does it take.....

    Does anyone have a calculation that is used to figure how many firefighters and/or fire stations are required for a given population? There's a book out there that covers this, but in my current location, I do not have access to it. The only calculation setup I have now is for military bases, which is unrealistic for this situation.

    Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Awwww.... I thought this was a joke
    A'int No Rocket Scientist's in The Firehall

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    • #3
      The only thing like that I've ever seen was in a really old fire-college textbook that used to be on the bookshelf of a station I worked at a few years ago...

      It was the textbook for something like a "Fire Service Management" course and had been published in the 60's. The numbers they recommended were real "fifties-ish" and it kind of made me laugh. I think it was something like 6 firefighters plus one officer per Engine Co. and 7 firefighters and one officer per Truck in a commercial/industrial district. For a primarily residential district, it allowed for dropping those numbers of firefighters per company by one.

      I guess those were "the good ol' days" when our predecessors did this job for 72 or 96 hours per week for the equivalent of minimum wage... How else would you have paid for those numbers?
      Fire service survival tips:
      1) Cook at 350...
      2) Pump at 150...
      3) When in doubt, isolate and deny entry...
      4) When in trouble, claim lack of adult supervision.

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      • #4
        Stations Requirements per capita

        Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe the NFPA/ISO standard is to have 1 Fire station for every 5-10 square miles or 1 fire station per 10,000 residents. Your response time should be under 5 or 6 minutes so that would mean that the call would be relatively close to a station. I also believe it is NFPA 1710 or 1910 one that reccomends there be 4 firefighters on the first due and subsequent companies responding to a call. I do not think there is a SET POLICY or calculation on number of firefighters. I am pretty certain about the station locations though.

        Hope this helps!

        Take care and thanks for fighting for my freedom!
        LREngine135
        Firefighter/EMT-B


        All things I say...while not always making sense are ALWAYS my opinion and only mine. They do not reflect the opinions of any department of which I am a member.

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        • #5
          There's several models for fire department staffing.

          Dang it, it's too early on a Sunday morning...I had the math all done and it doesn't add up!

          Get back to you later...
          IACOJ Canine Officer
          20/50

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          • #6
            When we were doing our contract back in the late 90's we used a book put out by the U.S. conference of Mayors and City Managers that had a formula. If I recall correctly it was 2.5 firefighters per 1000 of population ,but I believe that that number has been reduce to 2.0 per thousand. If I find the book I will post its title here.
            IACOJ Membership 2002
            {15}

            Mike IAFF

            The beatings will continue until the morale improves

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Smoke20286
              Awwww.... I thought this was a joke
              How many firefighters does it take change a light bulb?


              ONE........

              ......Just as long as the firefighter closely follows the established perimeters as outlined by the department's operational guidelines, which are based on recommendations from both municipal, state/provincial, and federal guidelines concerning the handling of the bulb and light socket. Also, the firefighter must be sure to take into account the environmental impacts of replacing the light bulb as advised by a special joint committee made up of local and national industry leaders and environmental activist groups.

              Prior to changing the bulb, the firefighter must undergo training in order to meet the guidelines for handling a burnt out light bulb, as outlined by:
              The Workers Compensation Board (WCB)
              The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA)
              The Occupational Safety & Health Association (OSHA)
              The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)

              Once the required training has been completed a panel of senior officers may need to be established to decided which firefighter should undertaking the changing of the light bulb. The panel will conduct written and oral interviews, as well as a physical and psychological evaluation to determine which firefighter should be recommended to the Fire Chief. Once a recommendation is made, the Fire Chief will review the panal's desicion and take the recommendation to the city or municipal council for approval.

              Once the firefighter has changed the light bulb, he or she will undergo a weeklong mandatory CISD treatment to evaluate any psychological, emotional, or physical damage incurred by the firefighter as a result of changing the bulb. Once the CISD evaluation is completed, the firefighter will return to "active light duty" for 90 days.

              .... gotta love the new, improved, politically correct fire department jokes....

              "No one ever called the Fire Department for doing something smart..."

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              • #8
                LOL @ FF26

                Comment


                • #9
                  I seem to remember this from a sub division discussion.

                  New sub divisions are constandtly poping up in MT. There is a reg that requires that no new construction can occur more then 5 miles (not sure if it is road or straight line) from a fire station.

                  So they have to keep the fire protectoin on par with the new construction.

                  As far as fire fighters per population, not sure. There are times in rural MT wher the number of fire fighers can get to be 10 times the number of permanent residents. Wildfire season tends to bring in armys of yellow and green.
                  -Brotherhood: I don't know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.
                  -Mistakes: It could be that the purpose of you life is to serve as a warning to others.

                  -Adversity: That which does not kill me postpones the inevitable.

                  -Despair: Its always darkest before it goes Pitch Black.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by firefighter26


                    How many firefighters does it take change a light bulb?


                    ONE........

                    ......Just as long as the firefighter closely follows the established perimeters as outlined by the department's operational guidelines,

                    Once the firefighter has changed the light bulb, he or she will undergo a weeklong mandatory CISD treatment to evaluate any psychological,


                    Sorry to break it to ya, but you never established command. There will have to be a formal inquiry!


                    Seriously though, the "Green Book" a.k.a. "Managing Fire Services" was/is published by the ICMA (International City Managment Association, or words to that effect). I have seen recent editions distributed by NFPA.
                    ullrichk
                    a.k.a.
                    perfesser

                    a ship in a harbor is safe. . . but that's not what ships are for

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I know there has been recommended levels but I've never heard of any hard fast rule. Detroits numbers follow.

                      21,511 residents per station
                      13,314 residents per company.
                      1.28 Firefighters per 1,000 population (as staffing stands now)

                      So much for the conference of Mayors/NFPA and ISO, if what was stated above is even close to being true.

                      Our Mayor wants to cut the department to levels that would bring these numbers.

                      23,125 residents per station
                      14,230 residents per company
                      1.08 Firefighters per 1,000 population

                      Now there's progress for ya!
                      Last edited by FireLt1951; 10-20-2003, 06:08 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by FireLt1951
                        I know there has been recommended levels but I've never heard of any hard fast rule. Detroits numbers follow.

                        21,511 residents per station
                        13,314 residents per company.
                        1.28 Firefighters per 1,000 population (as staffing stands now)

                        So much for the conference of Mayors/NFPA and ISO, if what was stated above is even close to being true.

                        Our Mayor wants to cut the department to levels that would bring these numbers.

                        23,125 residents per station
                        14,230 residents per company
                        1.08 Firefighters per 1,000 population

                        Now there's progress for ya!
                        Lou, we have had the same progress...

                        1985
                        20,000 population
                        1.9 firefighters per 1000

                        2003
                        18,000 population
                        1.7 firefighters per 1000

                        They could care less
                        IACOJ Membership 2002
                        {15}

                        Mike IAFF

                        The beatings will continue until the morale improves

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          If you are figuring the milage from the station it is 5 road miles from the station with at least one truck in it. That is according to ISO.
                          Les Hartford
                          Assistant Chief
                          LMR Fire Dept.

                          The views posted here are strickly my own and not of any of the groups I am affiliated with.

                          IACOJ Member

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                          • #14
                            Re: Stations Requirements per capita

                            Originally posted by LRFireE135
                            Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe the NFPA/ISO standard is to have...
                            I spent a fair amount of time looking through the NFPA codes last year looking for a "standard 1st alarm" (for a post in these forums) and never found anything which said "You will have X responding units..." but did find a lot of "shall respond with an appropriate response based on preplanning." Basically, my understanding of NFPA is it gives you a lot of rope to hang yourself but you need to figure out how to properly tie the knots so to speak. I imagine that ISO must have a set formula for determining your rating, not sure where you'd find it.
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                            • #15
                              You can find the ISO formula in the Fire Suppression Rating Schedule published by (you guessed it) ISO.

                              For maximum credit (ISO doesn't REQUIRE anything) I believe the minimum response on a first alarm to a structure is two engines and a ladder (or service company if a ladder is not required).

                              I'm a little rusty here, but I seem to remember that you can get credit for up to 12 FF responding with each apparatus - we're assuming here that they don't necessarily arrive on the apparatus. Volunteers and off-duty personnel count as one third of a firefighter for this calculation.

                              Any ISO gurus out there, please feel free to correct me, I don't deal with this sort of thing very often.
                              ullrichk
                              a.k.a.
                              perfesser

                              a ship in a harbor is safe. . . but that's not what ships are for

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