2014 Annual Report
The staff consists of nine full-time firefighter/paramedics, one administrative aide and thirty five part-time firefighter/paramedic/EMTs. The department staffs the fire station with dedicated and professional personnel 24-hours per day at the Safety Center. This station houses two medic ambulances, one rescue pumper, one fire engine, one quint fire truck and one support/hydrant maintenance vehicle.
Emergency medical service incidents continued to be one of the priorities of the department and were responsible for 62% of the total incident volume. Total loss from fire in the community was $86,400. The department attributes the low number of fire incidents to fire prevention efforts and the fire inspections conducted by fire safety staff. In a modern fire service, preventing the outbreak and serious spread of fire is considered as essential to public safety as proficiency in fighting fires.
The department received an Insurance Services Office (ISO) rating of two as a result of the review of the department’s operations. The ISO rating system uses a scale of one to nine for its rating system. If a city has a score of nine, its residents will pay a much higher premium than a city with a lower score. Montgomery’s previous ISO score was a three. Current data show there are 2,836 communities in the State of Ohio, of which no community has a score of one and only thirty-two have a score of two.
Fire Department Funding
A 5.5 mil levy was approved by the community in 1999 to fund the operations of the fire department. The levy was projected to last ten years, or until 2009. Through careful planning and budget controls, the current levy should fund the department through 2017, or eight years beyond the projected life of the levy. The department also receives revenue through the billing of EMS patients who are not property owners in the City.
Public education programs are a critical component of a modern fire department. The fire department provided tours of the Safety Center, taught CPR classes and coordinated Fire Prevention Week activities. Forty eight individual programs were offered to 1,474 participants, as the department strived to prevent injuries and accidents from occurring in the community. The Child Car Seat Safety Program taught 214 citizens how to properly use and place their children in car seats in 2014. Since the beginning of this program in 1999, the department has instructed over 2,770 individuals in the proper installation of child car seats.
A Citizen Emergency Response Team (CERT) was organized in 2012 and educated 28 residents on how to handle emergencies in the event they are first on the scene in their neighborhood. The CERT members are dedicated to assisting emergency services in responding to large scale emergencies that affect the region when local resources are exhausted and awaiting regional, state and federal resources. Such large scale emergencies include tornados, long-term power outages, winter storms and other natural disasters. Additionally, CERT members are responsible to assist with public education as they work with their neighbors in preparation of disasters and emergencies. In 2014, CERT members also assisted the department with traffic management during the July 4th parade, shared CPR information at the Bastille Day Celebration, and role-played victims in mock disaster drills.
In early 2014 the department launched a new web-based program that is available to the residents of Montgomery. Once a resident registers on the secure website, the City’s paramedics are able to use a smart phone to quickly, reliably, and securely access the resident’s health history to aid in providing emergency care during a 911 response. EMS SignPost is an abbreviated version of a person’s health history stored on a personal secure web page. It includes items such as medications, persistent health conditions, allergies, and doctor’s contact information. A special access code to each individual’s personal web page is stored on a refrigerator via a magnetic ID card that the City supplies to the resident free of charge.