Chief John Burgoyne informed the Parker County Emergency Services District 7 Commissioners at their board meeting on Aug. 22 that the Greenwood Rural VFD had once again improved its ISO Rating – this time from a 6 to a 5. Fire districts are rated by ISO on a scale from 1-10; a 1 is the best rating possible and a 10 is equivalent to having no fire service at all. It is possible for departments with fire hydrants to achieve a 1 rating but a 5 is quite good for a department like Greenwood, which has only three hydrants in its district. Departments like Greenwood have to haul water to all their fires and that is a “very difficult thing to do.”ISO, the Insurance Services Office, Inc., a company which rates over 45,000 fire districts in the United States, made its final rating decision after an exhaustive study. An ISO field representative visited Greenwood for several days back in the February through May time-frame and while in the district, he studied the Greenwood volunteers from many perspectives. He did a detailed analysis of training procedures, equipment capabilities, apparatus functionality, annual safety checks, maintenance practices, water supply, dispatch procedures, firefighter certifications and operating guidelines to evaluate the department’s overall effectiveness. Battalion Chief Mike Ellis said the department improved its rating from a 9 to a 6 back in 2006 but changes in staff, equipment and procedures enabled them to improve again and that they are “very proud of the 5 rating.”“We will continue to make improvements with the ESD’s help and in a few years we hope we can again announce that we have been able to achieve an improvement in our rating,” Chief John Burgoyne said. “The passage of the ESD 7 election back in 2009 is the most significant thing that has allowed for the improved rating. With the ESD’s help we now have a day crew of off-duty career firefighters and that has helped us to continue to improve our response time and performance. The real benefit of the improved rating will be for the residents of the Greenwood Fire district. The lower the rating number is, the lower the cost will be for fire insurance, which is a large part of homeowners insurance.”To learn more about Insurance Service Office, please visit www.iso.com. To learn more about Greenwood Rural VFD, please visit www.greenwoodvfd.org.