Spokane Valley Fire Department is Accredited by the Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI). We first became an Internationally Accredited Agency in 2011 and joined the elite ranks of just over 200 fire/rescue departments worldwide to achieve this prestigious designation. In 2021, the Commission unanimously approved SVFD’s Accreditation for another five years (through 2026).
A comprehensive, rigorous self-assessment and evaluation model, Accreditation promotes excellence and encourages quality improvement leading to higher service delivery levels for citizens. The process enables fire and emergency medical services agencies to:
- Assure the public and colleagues that they have definite missions and objectives that are appropriate for the jurisdictions they serve
- Provide a detailed evaluation of the services provided to the community
- Identify areas of strength and weakness within the Department
- Create methods or systems for addressing deficiencies while building organizational success
- Encourage professional growth for both the Department and its personnel
- Create a mechanism for developing strategic and program action plans
- Provide a forum for the communication of organizational priorities
- Foster national recognition by the public and colleagues
The Accreditation process enables fire and emergency service agencies to examine past, current and future service levels and internal performance and compare them to industry best practices. This allows the organization to determine community risk and safety needs and develop community-specific Standards of Cover, evaluate the performance of the Department, and establish a method for achieving continuous organizational improvement.
For SVFD, the Accreditation process has resulted in the development and maintenance of key planning documents including a Comprehensive Risk Assessment, Strategic Plan, Self-Assessment Manual and Standards of Cover. These documents were carefully reviewed, validated and verified by a CFAI-assigned mentor and experienced Peer Review Team.
For more information, contact the Accreditation Manager, Division Chief Jeff Bordwell.
WSRB Fire Insurance Rating
The Spokane Valley Fire Department and the Cities of Spokane Valley, Millwood and Liberty Lake have achieved a Protection Class 2 fire insurance rating by the Washington Surveying and Rating Bureau (WSRB). The rating is effective April 1, 2017, and typically lasts for 10 years. These cities were previously designated as Class 3. The unincorporated areas of the Spokane Valley Fire Department are also a Class 2 rating.
A Class 2 city designation can equate to lower insurance premiums for residents and business owners depending on their respective insurance carriers. Residents and business owners are encouraged to contact their insurance agents to determine the relative effect this new protection classification will have on their insurance premiums.
The WSRB rates cities and their fire departments by risk level between 1 and 10 (1 indicates exemplary fire protection capabilities; 10 indicates insufficient capabilities). Many insurance companies use the WSRB designation to assess insurance premium rates for homeowners and commercial properties. Protection Class designation is determined by WSRB’s assessment of the fire department’s ability to suppress fires. Categories include:
- Fire Department – distribution of fire stations, engine and ladder companies, pumping capacity, apparatus maintenance, department personnel staffing and training
- Water Supply – adequacy of firefighting water supply including water flow, hydrant locations and system maintenance
- Emergency Communications – evaluation of the community’s 911 system ability to receive and handle calls for emergency services
- Fire Safety Control – fire prevention, public education and building code enforcement
Spokane Valley Fire Department is the only Class 2 fire department in Eastern Washington and one of only two fire departments (Bellevue) statewide that have both a Class 2 rating and are internationally Accredited. There are only five fire departments statewide that have earned the Class 2 designation. A Class 3 designation is held by the top seven percent of all fire departments statewide. There is only one agency in the State of Washington rated as a Class 1.
The evaluation criteria used by WSRB incorporates many nationally-recognized standards, such as those developed by the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) and American Water Works Association (AWWA).
The WSRB’s evaluation of Spokane Valley Fire Department fire protection capabilities has been filed with and approved by the Washington State Office of Insurance Commissioner.
* Properties located more than five miles from a fire station, more than 1,000 feet from a fire hydrant, and/or with limited access are exceptions, and will have a rating higher than Class 3 from WSRB. (Check with your insurance company for more information.)