What a 'Class 1' rating for KCFD means for you

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- This year, the Kansas City Fire Department received its first Class 1 ISO rating in the department's history.

"It's kind of an elite number," said Chief Kansas City Fire Marshall Floyd Peoples. "There aren't that many, when you consider all of the large cities across America." 

The ISO rating is something more than 400,000 fire departments across the country participate in. Fewer than 450 of them have a Class 1 rating.

The rating system judges fire departments on things like communication, response time, training and equipment. The ratings favor lower numbers, meaning Class 1 is a better grade for a department than Class 2, and so on.

"As a parent, what that means to you is if you have a child that's in danger, they are going to have first class service there very rapidly," said Peoples. 

ISO ratings are reported to insurance companies. What this means for you is your home or business insurance can drop just by living in an area where a fire department has a good rating. Businesses may see a drop in their insurance quicker than a home owner. 

Notable ratings around town

  • Olathe Fire Department also has a Class 1 rating.
  • Johnson County Fire District 1 has leapt up the ISO scale in recent years. The district was rated Class 6 in 2010, but boasts a Class 2 rating for 2017. The district credits the rating improvement to additional engines and personnel, new trainings and adding an inspection program.

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