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New, Improved ISO Rating Could Mean Reduced Fire Insurance Rates in Vail

  • 9 October 2015

Beginning Nov. 1, property owners in the Town of Vail will have the benefit of an improved rating for fire suppression services which could result in reduced insurance rates for some customers. Details regarding the new Insurance Services Office Public Protection Classification rating of Class 2/2x were presented to the Town Council by Fire Chief Mark Novak during the Oct. 6 work session. This rating is an improvement from the previous rating of Class 4/9 issued in 2010 and is based on an evaluation of the structure fire suppression delivery system provided by the fire department.

An ISO rating of 1 is the highest rating while an ISO rating of 10 is given when the fire protection system does not meet ISO’s minimum criteria. In addition to the structure fire delivery system, the Public Protection Classification assessment also evaluates the 911 and dispatch system as well as the water supply available for firefighting.

The new Class 2 rating applies to all properties within the response area of Vail Fire and Emergency Services. The 2x classification applies only to properties that are more than 1,000 feet from a fire hydrant.

According to Chief Novak, the improved ISO classification is a direct reflection of the investment that has been made in improving emergency services in the Town of Vail, specifically the opening of the West Vail Fire Station and staffing a third fire engine on a full- time basis.

In addition, recognition is given to the Vail Public Safety Communications Center. Police Chief Dwight Henninger says the center contributed to the improved rating by dispatching calls in a timely manner in accordance with the ISO standards.

Eagle River Water and Sanitation District owns and operates the public water system that provides water for fire protection throughout the Town of Vail (and beyond). District Field Operations Manager Glen Phelps says district assets are kept in top working condition – tracked via a computerized maintenance management system – and staff members work diligently with ISO officials and local fire agencies to meet fire flow regulations and ensure smooth operation of more than 500 fire hydrants in its Vail service area.

The ISO rating is used by many insurance companies as a part of their underwriting process to determine availability of insurance, coverage levels and premiums. Property owners are encouraged to contact their insurance company to determine if the new rating will decrease their premiums. This rating will be in effect until ISO conducts a new evaluation in approximately five years.

For more information, contact Chief Novak at 970-477-3474.



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