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Deadly Delays: The Decline of Fire Response
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Map of West Tisbury fires
THIS MAP shows locations and response times for building fires from 1990-2002
Building fires: Green diamond  1-5 minute response Fire stations: Fire truck icon
Yellow diamond  6 minute response Click here for an interactive map
Red diamond  7-29 minute response

West Tisbury Fire Department


Community served: West Tisbury, Mass.
Department type: Volunteer firefighters
Fire stations (department)1: 2
Fire stations (town): 2
Square miles (town): 26.4
Square miles per station (town): 13.2 [ See rankings ]
1 Some communities have more than one fire department.
 
The Boston Globe

Deadly delays

An exclusive Globe investigation into fire response times.
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On-time response rates
SUMMARY:
On-time rate, building fires receiving a response within 6 minutes, 1986-2002: 65.0%
[ See rankings ]
   On-time rate, early years, 1986-1998: 66.7%
   On-time rate, recent years, 1999-2002: 60.0%
DETAILS:
1986-1998 1999-2002 1986-2002
Fires with on-time response 10 3 13
Fires with slower response 5 2 7
Total building fires studied 15 5 20

ISO insurance ratings
Insurance companies use ratings from ISO, a New Jersey company, to help determine fire insurance premiums. ISO rates communities on a scale from 1 (best) to 10 (no protection). The ratings are based on the community's fire department, water supply, and dispatch communications. The ratings are not based at all on response times. The same scale of 1 to 10 is applied to the effectiveness of building codes. In a split fire rating, such as 4/9, the second number applies to properties more than 1,000 feet from a hydrant.
ISO fire protection rating, Nov. 2004: 10
ISO building code rating, residential, Nov. 2004: 10
ISO building code rating, commercial, Nov. 2004: 10

Municipal spending on fire protection
Fire spending FY 2003 (town only): $138,355
Fire spending as percent of total budget, FY 2003 (town only): 1.5% [ See rankings ]
Fire spending as percent of total budget, FY 1987 (town only): 1.7%
Fire spending per capita, FY 2003 (town only): $50 [ See rankings ]
Fire spending per capita, FY 1987, in 2003 dollars (town only): $46
Change in fire spending per capita, 1987-2003 (town only): 8.9%
Change in other municipal spending per capita, 1987-2003, adjusted for inflation (town only): 23.6%
Fire spending per housing unit, FY 2003 (town only): $134
Fire spending per square mile, FY 2003 (town only): $5,246

Community information
County: Dukes
Population, 2004 (estimate): 2,772
Occupied housing units, 2000: 1,034
Median family income, 1999: $59,514
Population growth, 1990-2000: 44.8%
Population growth, 1980-1990: 44.2%
Tax base (assessed value per capita), FY 2004: $597,383
Total assessed value, FY 2004: $1,656,064,052
Single-family tax rate, FY 2004: $5.38

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