Standards of Cover still in Inspection process

VISTA — The most recent Standards of Cover were Introduced by fire Chief Ned Vander Pol in the Vista Fire Protection District’s Aug. 9 meeting. The report helps develop a community hazard reduction program.

Vander Pol advised the board of directors of the Vista Fire Protection District that the SOC discussion thing of the meeting would be an overview as they’d seen a PowerPoint presentation a few times already.

Vander Pol stated that the initial SOC was put into place in 2008.

“The objective is only to get a document there that dictates and explains, beginning in the start of what our risks and dangers are and then making certain that we are employing resources to mitigate those hazards,” he said. “We’re living in the city, and we understand what our dangers and risks are, so we do not purchase 17 fire boats — we really are employing resources appropriately to the risks that we have at hand.”

Vander Pol said the document’s benefits are apparent. The Vista Fire Department ended up on South Melrose using Station 5 because there was a need identified. The SOC also helped with the recovery of a fourth Advanced Life Support Act.

Vander Pol clarified that the most recent SOC was made in conjunction.  

“We’ll be doing another one of them in a few years as we get ready to perform another certification,” he said. “They go hand in hand — you can’t have the certification without the Standards of Cover.”

He did point out that they did finish a Standards of Cover prior to without the certification, but that was for the aim of getting a baseline of information.

Vander Pol wanted everyone to understand the SOC is a document that can be looked at historically to make sure the fire department is tracking in the right direction. And if this is not the case, they could determine the issue and offer options to mitigate the circumstance, like adding resources. Vander Pol used the ALS ambulance that was fourth as an example, explaining that those tracking results will be shown over time.  

Based on Vander Pol, the SOC offers a great plan for the organization.

“You have a great idea of where this organization has been and then where we hope to proceed in the long run,” he said. “The critical task analysis is really a significant part of what we look at.”

The SOC also has baseline and benchmarks for its tasks the fire department takes on such as toxic substances, fire and EMS.

Vander Pol clarified that a correlation is between the city of the Vista Fire Protection District and Vista.

“The district and the city need to accept this document,” he stated, noting that there needs to be parity between any modifications that occur in the city or the district. “Therefore, if reaction times are moving up at the district, they can’t be disproportionate to what is happening in the city.”

The SOC includes the breakdown of this information between district and the city, Vander Pol said.

Vista Fire Protection District Director Robert Fougner praised the team who put the SOC because of the wealth of information. He asked about the rural neighborhood response time. Metropolitan, suburban and rural divides the areas in Vista.

In the view of Fougner, the reaction times had gone up and he wanted to learn more about that.

Vander Pol clarified that there had not been a divergence in service or the reaction time.

“The reason is that those bounds changed, so that sample size to the rural has gone down tremendously, so the suburban has picked up more of those rural calls,” Vander Pol said. “So now the calls that we are getting from the rural region are the really far away ones.”

Vander Pol stated that he would make certain to present more data.

The district board told and members stated they were looking forward to this supporting documentation at the following meeting.

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