• An Arvada firefighter works to manage a structure fire on 59th Avenue.
  • An exterior shot of Arvada Fire Protection District station #7.
  • Arvada Fire Protection District paramedic vehicle #52.

The Arvada Fire Protection District was awarded a Class 1 Public Protection Classification from the Insurance Services Office on Feb. 22, a distinction that measures the District’s proficiency in a number of firefighting and fire prevention categories. A Class 1 PPC is the best possible fire protection rating that a response agency can achieve through the ISO.

The ISO classification makes the District one of 103 fire departments in the U.S. to achieve an ISO Class 1 classification and an accreditation from the Commission on Fire Accreditation International. The ISO gave the Arvada Fire Protection District a Class 2 rating in 2017, the District’s last appraisal until this year.

The ISO’s classification system evaluates a fire protection district’s water supply, dispatching ability, personnel, community fire prevention initiatives, and other firefighting and fire prevention metrics. Since the ISO’s 2017 assessment, the Arvada Fire Protection District saw improvements in its personnel deployment model, water supply, and community risk reduction.

Some of these measures rely in part on the performance of the Arvada Fire Protection District’s partners. For example, the District’s water supply comes from the City of Arvada, Valley Water District, Wheat Ridge Water District, and three other water and sanitation districts. Dispatch is handled by Jeffcom 911.

“It definitely wasn’t an independent achievement,” said Deanna Harrington, the Arvada Fire Protection District’s public information officer. “It was in collaboration with our partners.”

One of the District’s newest partners is Nymbl, a virtual app that helps seniors improve their balance and decrease the frequency and severity of falls at home. The Arvada Fire Protection District is one of the first response agencies to partner with Nymbl, a New Zealand-based company that offers free enrollment for the first 5,000 Coloradans that sign up for its app.

Harrington said that the Arvada Fire Protection District is able to access Nymbl’s user data on the back end and added that the app has been an effective preventative tool for the District since its rollout last year.

“We’ve had really, really good success with (Nymbl),” said Harrington. “It offers an app for our older adults to do exercises at home that have proven to reduce the incidents of fall so that they don’t need to call us because they fell down.”

Risk reduction also includes District inspectors conducting business fire inspections, teaching fire safety in schools, and offering free installation of smoke alarms in residential communities — all areas that contributed to the ISO’s Class 1 rating.

“The District’s Class 1 ISO rating is an excellent example of how cooperation and collaboration between government agencies can improve public safety,” said Arvada Fire Protection District Chief Mike Piper in a statement. “Reducing the property insurance premiums paid by our citizens is also a favorable result of such collaboration.”

In other Arvada Fire Protection District news, the District plans to break ground on a new Candelas fire station — Station 9 —the in April. Station 9 is slated for completion in the second quarter of 2022, according to Harrington.