“Fire Departments and communities are rated on a scale of 10 to one, with one being the best.”

Press Release: Cartersville, GA –  June 2, 2020 – The Cartersville Fire Department has received their updated community risk score, after a review by the Insurance Service Organization (ISO). Cartersville Fire Chief Scott Carter explained the long-range efforts, “We began with a very strategic plan in 2009. The plan was to build on the successes of those before us, and to efficiently target areas where we knew there were deficiencies in our service delivery. Through the support of our City Administration, Mayor Matt Santini and Council the ability to maintain this ISO classification was possible.” Chief Carter went on to say, “This updated rating shows a continuous commitment by the firefighters of Cartersville and our partners, such as Bob Jones with Cartersville Water, Sheriff Millsap and Bartow 911, Bartow County Fire and the staff of Bartow County Water Authority. This is truly a team effort.”

According to the notification received from Mr. Alex Shubert, Manager of the National Process Center for ISO, “ISO appreciates the high level of cooperation extended by local officials during the entire ISO process.” He went on to say, “The community protection baseline information gathered by ISO is an essential foundation upon which determination of the relative level of fire protection.”  The Insurance Service Organization (ISO) web site states, “The Public Protection Classification (PPC™) program recognizes the efforts of communities to provide fire protection services for citizens and property owners. A community’s investment in fire mitigation is a proven and reliable predicator of future fire losses. Insurance companies use PPC information to help establish fair premiums for fire insurance — generally offering lower premiums in communities with better protection. By offering economic benefits for communities that invest in their firefighting services, the program provides an additional incentive for improving and maintaining public fire protection.”

Fire Departments and communities are rated on a scale of 10 to one, with one being the best. Based on ISO statistics, they have evaluated 39,850 departments nationwide, and Cartersville is among approximately 1% that received a Class 1 rating.  According to the ISO notification received by Cartersville, the City of Cartersville is one of only 388 departments nationwide that have achieved this milestone. Cartersville has maintained solid classifications over the years, moving to a Class 5 in 1976, Class 4 in 1981, Class 3 in 2004 and now Class 1 since 2015.

Chief Carter stated that the impact on the community is very positive. He explained, “There is major incentive to attract new industry and commercial growth.” He went on to say, “When a prospect is looking at a community, they look at the ISO rating. From that rating they see how solid the public protection is and the commitment to protection. Being designated as a Class 1 ISO community is a major attraction that improves the local economy with solid investment.”

There were key accomplishments that have been completed that made the continuation of this Class 1 rating possible. Chief Carter said, “Our communication score went up 3 points since we were rated in 2015. This is a direct result of the investment that our citizens made with the new radio and computer aided dispatch system that was funded through S.P.L.O.S.T.” The community partnership between agencies, such as Bartow 911 under the leadership of Sheriff Clark Millsap proved vital. Chief Carter stated, “One of the strong points of our community is the willingness of agencies and local governments to work with each other and help make everyone safer. Sheriff Millsap and his 911 staff worked hard and brought our communication score up. The communication score increased by 45%.”  Carter concluded, “Through all the scores, the surveys and calculations, our people shined through. This rating is not about a department, but the people and all that goes into that. I am humbled that each day I get to work with my heroes, the firefighters of Cartersville. They truly are a Class 1 act!”