Pearland City Council recently received the results of a Standards of Cover and Staffing Study for the Pearland Fire Department.
The study had been approved in the 2016-2017 fiscal year to evaluate the current staffing and capabilities of the department in comparison to the hazards that exist in the community and the risk of adverse events occurring.
The end goal of the report is to provide Council with information to drive future funding and policy decisions.
The study found dispatch, crew turnout and overall operations to be fine.
Since there are no mandatory federal or state regulations directing the level of fire service response times or outcomes, cities have to implement their own rules and regulations for this.
The study used multiple sources to determine the best practical goal for response times in an urban area with population density to be similar to Pearland which was a time goal of 7 minutes and 30 seconds.
Currently, call to arrival time for Pearland is approximately 13 minutes. The study found that due to street design and topography, travel time cannot be improved without adding stations. The urban goal will require the addition of at least three fire stations in the future for a total of eight, and the addition of three staffed fire engine pumpers and three dedicated ladder fire trucks.
The study recommended filling the Operations Assistant Chief Position, evolving the Fire Captain-EMS to that of a full Fire Captain for shift training and Safety Officer, adding a Business Manager to Administration, two Administrative Assistant support positions to Administration and Training/Clinical Oversight Divisions, broadening policies and procedures and developing a Career Development Guide. They also recommended providing a second set of personal Protective Equipment.
With the study completed, the Council members will work with the Fire Department to develop a plan for the future.
Story by Karolyn Gephart