WASHINGTON — The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) today announced that it is conducting the first ever U.S. Fire Service Needs Assessment Survey. The USFA expects to begin mailing the needs assessment questionnaire to every fire department across the country beginning the week of December 10th. USFA is a part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Earlier in the year USFA began a census of fire departments to provide for the first time an accurate location and points of contact for every fire department in the country. This survey will expand on that census with additional information on resources and capabilities.
The USFA was directed as part of the FIRE Act, which created the Assistance to Fire Fighters Grant Program, to conduct a needs assessment survey and is doing so with the assistance of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).
The survey is designed to provide an accurate picture of fire department’s resource capabilities nationwide by community size. Departments are encouraged to be looking for the form and filling it out late this year and early next year. It is estimated that the form on average should take about 20 minutes to fill out.
A summary report of the survey findings prepared for Congress will be available on the USFA Web site in the latter half of 2002. NFPA and the USFA will release only aggregated data from the survey; fire department’s individual responses will be kept confidential.