ISO rating improves in townships, city

   Good news for the Sparta Area Protection District. The ISO rating for all of the eight townships and the City of Sparta served by the fire department has improved.
   “Most insurance companies rely on Insurance Services Offices (ISO) and how they insure people’s homes and businesses,” explained Fire Chief Mike Arnold.
   ISO completed an analysis of the structural fire suppression delivery system and assigned the department a Public Protection Classification (PPC) number.
   The townships used to be classified as a 10 – the worst possible. Thanks to the new station in Little Falls, the townships are now ranked a six. The city has improved from a four to a three.
   “And, we’re a whisker away from being a two,” said Arnold.
   Essentially, the better the rating, the lower the insurance premiums because most insurers use the PPC as part of their decision regarding personal or commercial property insurance, Arnold noted. The ratings also provide fire departments with a valuable benchmark and are used by many departments as a tool when planning, budgeting and justifying fire protection improvements.
   Residents of any of the eight townships who live within a five-mile radius from one of the three fire stations will have a class-six fire rating.
   “Unfortunately, if you live beyond five miles, then you are classified a 9/10,” said Arnold.
   The great news is, everyone who lives within a five-mile radius of the new station at 4130 Cty. Hwy. I in the Town of Little Falls who have had a 10 rating for years now drop to a six.
   “This is huge!” said Arnold, noting the effective date is Feb. 1, 2016.
   In addition to the new station, the new tender, platform truck and new fire hydrants in the city all played a role in improving the ratings. 
   “The Sparta Water Department was very, very helpful in this process,” he said, adding water department supervisor Todd Hanson was especially helpful.
   “My next goal is to look at what we can do to facilitate a class two in the city,” concluded Arnold.

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