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Polk residents: Are you eligible for city-provided fire protection?

January 12, 2017 GMT

Polk County residents, do you know that you might be eligible for City of Cedartown fire protection?

City-provided fire protection for Polk County residents, also referred to as outside fire protection, allows homeowners to benefit from municipal services in the event of a fire.

“Residents living within the Cedartown City Limits are already covered with municipal fire protection,” said Assistant City Clerk Edward Guzman. “Having the option to extend that fire protection to eligible county residents is something we would like to make everyone aware of.”

In order to be eligible for outside fire protection, the residence must be located outside of the City Limits but within five road miles of the Cedartown Fire Department.

“It gives you a little more peace of mind in regard to fire safety,” explained Guzman. “In most cases, but not all, having outside fire protection will lower the homeowner’s insurance. Some residents have told us that it’s lowered theirs considerably.” Guzman stressed that homeowners should check with their insurance provider to ask if adding fire protection would lower their costs.

The City of Cedartown has an Insurance Safety Office (ISO) Public Protection Class ranking of 3, and in terms of ranking, the smaller number the better. “The lower the number, the better for our residents,” said Cedartown Fire Chief Darrell Stephens.

ISO rankings are determined by testing four parts of a fire department’s operations including needed fire flow, which is the theoretical amount of water necessary for fire suppression. In Cedartown, that flow is established at 3,500 gallons per minute. According to Stephens, the response time of the municipal fire department runs anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes.

The ISO inspection also measures how emergency communications are handled, available water supply and flow testing of hydrants along with department staffing, equipment and community risk reductions.

Residents can inquire about eligibility for outside fire protection by calling City Hall at 770-748-3220. For eligible residents, the annual cost is $120. For businesses, the fee is $500 and the industrial fee is $1,000.