Fire District 7 improves ISO rating

By Harold Campbell
Salina Journal – March 21, 2017


Saline County Fire District 7 has improved its Insurance Service Office rating, which means some residents and businesses could see decreased fire insurance rates, Shane Komarek, district chief, said Monday.


Komarek said the jump from a 9/10 rating to 5/5Y resulted from increased equipment, including a tanker and other trucks, and another truck the district decided to keep.


“We now have 4,000 gallons of water in three different trucks,” he said. “This automatically puts us in a different classification.”


The rating change came after a recent inspection by ISO officials. ISO looks at departments’ personnel, training, trucks, equipment, incident reporting, adequate water supply and available dispatch services.


Residents and businesses in the north-central section of Saline County are covered by Fire District 7. The improved ISO rating could mean an insurance savings for property owners within five miles of the station on Old U.S. Highway 81.


Komarek said not all insurance companies use ISO ratings to determine insurance premiums. For those that do, he said, there will likely be minimal savings for homeowners, but business and industrial rates could experience more significant savings.


However, he couldn’t give any specific numbers.


Currently, the district has 17 volunteers. Komarek said response times were influenced by such factors as how many volunteers are available or if the call is received during the evening, weekend or working hours.


“We have a number of mutual aid agreements,” he said. “If it looks like we’re going to be shorthanded, we call for other districts.”


Komarek said he thought the district was in good shape in equipment and personnel.


“This better rating is the result of a lot of hard work and dedication that the volunteers have given,” he said.