Parents have one less thing to worry about this school year. The Houston Fire Department’s Life Safety Bureau, under supervision by Fire Marshal Jerry Ford, instituted a new fire prevention initiative called “The 360 Program”. The 360 Program is designed to use analytics (data and numbers) to help HFD Inspectors conduct targeted inspections of the City of Houston’s most populated and vulnerable areas.
Under this program, schools are inspected on annual bases with 99 percent of all Houston Independent School District (HISD) schools receiving a thorough fire inspection prior to the “first day of school” this year. This is a significant improvement from past inspection programs, when schools were inspected every 3-5 years.
“As a parent myself, I know all too well about the worries that go along with the start of school,” says Ford. “This new program can put parent’s minds at ease that the school they drop their child at has received a recent thorough fire inspection.”
This new “360 program” is a bold first step by the Fire Marshal’s Office, who is broadening the program to other occupancies. Fire Chief Terry Garrison agrees that fire inspections are an important component to the American Fire Service.
“It not only ensures that systems are in place to prevent fires but it also protects firefighters who respond, if a fire does occur,” says Garrison. “Firefighters responding to a building fire have an expectation of how these buildings will respond.”
These safety measures are a crucial part in the safety of firefighters. The 360 program is aligned with the philosophy of providing a high degree of customer service to our citizens, while providing for the safety of firefighters.