Fire Department Accreditation

Fire Department Accreditation
Posted on 03/23/2020
Department Accreditation

Ten Years and Counting!

Washington Township Fire Department – the only accredited fire department in the Miami Valley – has earned its third consecutive accreditation from the Commission on Fire Accreditation International.

In making their unanimous decision, CFAI commissioners praised the level of detail found in the fire department’s accreditation report and commended the department for its officer credentialing. “Not only does your team talk the talk, they walk the walk through individual credentialing. Everyone in your community benefits,” said Chief Tom Thompson of Camp Pendleton, Calif., a commissioner at the hearing in Dallas, Texas.

An Accredited Fire Department

In addition to being the only accredited department in the Miami Valley, the Washington Township Fire Department is one of just nine in Ohio to be accredited by CFAI, an internationally-recognized benchmark for fire and emergency services. Accreditation was awarded in 2008 and again in 2013 and 2018. In total, 247 organizations are accredited worldwide.

Achieving and maintaining CFAI accreditation is a significant undertaking that requires leadership, the combined efforts of all department members, and a culture of quality throughout the organization. Both accreditation and reaccreditation involved a rigorous five-year process that encompassed all aspects of department operations.

The Accreditation Process

Accreditation necessitates the development and maintenance of several key documents, including a Strategic Plan, Self-Assessment Manual and a Community Risk Assessment and Standards of Cover. Department operations are validated and verified during an on-site visit by a peer assessment team and CFAI commissioners provide a panel review.

Read about our strategic plan. Check here.

Reasons for Accreditation

We want our services to be the best and the CFAI accreditation process helps us accomplish that. CFAI provides a system for local governments to assess their communities’ needs and a method for fire departments to evaluate their performance.

For example, accreditation has caused the Washington Township Fire Department to look closely at how it performs and to compare this to a recognized national standard of 258 performance indicators in ten categories. Of the 258 indicators, 86 are core competencies required for accreditation.

Perhaps most significant, the accreditation process has placed the department on a path to continuous improvement, starting with a self-review and continuing on through the creation and implementation of a strategic plan. Details about the strategic plan can be found here.

Our department has embraced the continuous service improvement model, knowing that no matter how hard we strive, there always will be room for improvement. As a result, this model promises to enhance the services our community receives now and into the future.