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Leawood Receives Top Rating for Fire Protection

Post Date:06/01/2016 11:54 AM

For more information, contact:
Dave Williams, Leawood Fire Chief, davew@leawood.org, 913.266.0601
Mandy Cawby, Director of Customer Relations, mcawby@waterone.org, 913.895.5546

Leawood, Kan. – The City of Leawood has achieved distinction as a top-rated fire-protection service. Effective June 1, Leawood becomes a Class 1 community based on the Insurance Services Office (ISO) independent rating system for measuring the quality and effectiveness of municipal fire protection.

Leawood is one of only 178 entities out of 48,000 surveyed in the U.S. to have earned an elite ISO Class 1 rating. Less than a 1 percent meet this high standard. Leawood has held a Class 3 rating over 20 years The Leawood Fire Department, accredited since August 26, 2015 by the Commission of Fire Accreditation International (CFAI), joins an elite group of accredited agencies to attain an ISO Class 1 rating.

“The Governing Body is extremely proud of this accomplishment as the City of Leawood strives to provide exceptional public safety to our residents, businesses and visitors of Leawood,” said Mayor Peggy Dunn.

ISO’s Public Protection Classification ratings are used to help establish appropriate fire insurance premiums for residential, commercial and industrial properties. The program provides an objective, countrywide standard that helps fire departments plan and budget for facilities, equipment and training. 

“We are committed to providing top tier public services to Leawood residents,” said Fire Chief Dave Williams. “We value the strong partnerships with local agencies like WaterOne, Johnson County Emergency Management and Communications and all of the fire departments in Johnson County that we have automatic mutual aid inter-local agreements with helped us achieve a Class 1 rating.”

Leawood scored 95.98 points out of 105.50 possible points during an ISO audit earlier this year. The rating is based on a comprehensive review of fire department capabilities and efforts (50 percent), the water supply system (40 percent), and emergency communications system (10 percent). WaterOne is an independent public utility that provides Leawood’s water service. The Johnson County Emergency Communications Center (JCECC) handles critical dispatch and tracking services for fire incidents.

“WaterOne plays a vital role in fire safety by providing reliable access to water at no public cost to taxpayers,” said WaterOne General Manager Mike Armstrong. “One of reasons we recently built a new pump station on Nall Avenue was to enhance pressure which helps firefighting capabilities.  We are pleased to have a hand in Leawood’s accomplishment.”

The 53 member Leawood Fire Department operates under an interlocal agreements with other Johnson County municipal fire departments and Fire Protection Districts. This enables JCECC to efficiently dispatch the closest units to respond to emergencies, regardless of city boundaries.

“We are privileged to serve the Leawood Fire Department and are proud to have contributed to its success in achieving a Class 1 ISO rating,” said JCECC Director Ellen Wernicke.

According to ISO data, a community’s investment in firefighting services is a good predictor of future fire losses. Communities with excellent fire protection can expect less property damage and higher survival rates.

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Fast Fact

WaterOne is an independent, non-profit water utility, proudly serving 400,000+ customers in the Johnson County area.