The Beecher Fire Protection District recently underwent a review with the Insurance Services Office (ISO) to survey and update our community's fire protection classification rating. The BFPD is proud to announce that ISO awarded the Fire District with a Class 2 rating, a significant improvement from the previous Class 4 rating. This is exciting news for property owners as the improvement could translate into lower insurance rates for residences and businesses within the fire district.
The ISO Class 2 rating will take effect July 1st, 2023, for those who live within the Village of Beecher. Our rating for those living in unincorporated areas is a Class 4. To put the rating into perspective, of the approximately 40,000 fire departments in the United States, only 487 have achieved the elite Class 1 rating, and only 1,964 have attained a Class 2 rating. In Illinois alone, only 29 have achieved the Class 1 rating, and only 126 have attained a Class 2 rating. The review process is comprehensive. The program evaluates the fire districts coordinated response to fires, response times, training records, emergency communications, and water supply components and testing.
“These results are a direct reflection of the service and dedication of the members of our fire district, and the excellent work they do to protect our community every day,” said Fire Chief Joe Falaschetti. “The rating also takes into consideration the water distribution system and fire hydrants that are serviced and maintained by the Village of Beecher, and also the Laraway Communication Center staff, who professionally dispatch our emergency services.”
The ISO rating is one of the primary elements used by most of the insurance industry to develop fire protection premiums for homes and businesses. ISO provides ratings on a relative scale of 1 through 10, with 1 representing exemplary public fire protection and 10 indicating the public fire protection does not meet minimum standards. The lower the ISO rating, the lower the premium. The ISO rating reflects standards developed over many years from the study of pertinent fire protection conditions and performance standards.
“This new rating is partly based on our current staffing levels, detailed training program, and response times. Achieving a lower ISO rating is a difficult task that has taken several years to achieve. Our investment in fire mitigation, which is a proven and reliable predictor of future fire losses, also helped improve our rating,” said Fire Chief Joe Falaschetti. “The cooperation and commitment between the Village and Fire District was essential to this achievement and we will all work hard to maintain the Class 2 rating in the future.”
As the BFPD’s ISO rating changes, we encourage all property owners, both residential and commercial, to contact their insurance agent and ask for a review of their individual fire insurance premiums. Insurance companies – not ISO – establish the premiums they charge to policyholders. The methodology a company uses to calculate premiums for fire insurance may depend on the company’s fire loss experience, underwriting guidelines and marketing strategy. Assuming all other factors are equal, the price of your property insurance in the Beecher area may decrease.
“Aside from the potential reduction in insurance premiums, the quest for a lower ISO rating has challenged our district to be better in all we do,” Chief Falaschetti stated. “Those who serve on the Beecher Fire Protection District are dedicated to providing exemplary service to benefit the area, its residents, and its future economic development opportunities.”
The improved ISO rating reflects the BFPD’s commitment to investigating and implementing strategies that promote economic development. The lower rating provides businesses with a potential opportunity to realize insurance savings, which results in an improved bottom line.
If you have specific questions about the ISO rating change, please contact The Beecher Fire Protection District at 708-946-6585.