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Changes in fire station personnel could affect insurance rates

Changes in fire personnel could affect insurance rates

BLACK FOREST, Colo. - Changes in personnel at a Black Forest fire station could impact the amount residents pay for homeowners insurance.

The Black Forest Fire Board announced this week, it will stop staffing Fire Station 2 with paid firefighters to help pay for its independent investigation into the Black Forest Fire. There will only be volunteer firefighters.

The construction of Station 2 meant most homes in the district are now within five miles of a fire station, according to the department's website. It helped improve the area's ISO, a rating based on how well an area is protected from fires. Insurance companies use the ISO rating to determine rates.

Jim Whitlock, of American Family Insurance said a change in staffing at the station could change the area's ISO rating.

"In this case, it could result in perhaps moving that Station 2 to a slightly higher town class code," he said. "If it does that, it could affect homeowner rates by about 10 to 20 percent."

But Whitlock said the insurance companies look at additional factors to determine rates, and the fact that Station 2 is staying open with volunteers there will help. He encourages homeowners to "wait and see." He predicts the next ISO rating evaluation will take place in two to three years.

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