Planning and Management Activities of the National Fire Prevention and Control Administration

PSAD-78-123: Published: Jun 21, 1978. Publicly Released: Jun 21, 1978.

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The National Fire Prevention and Control Administration was established in 1974 to provide assistance to state and local communities in the areas of data collection, training, public education, and research concerning fire prevention. About $44 million of the $46 million appropriated for the Fire Administration for fiscal years 1975 to 1978 was allocated to these four areas. The Fire Administration has not performed sufficient studies and analyses of the fire problem to provide assurance that the most effective programs are being developed. In order to obtain a better understanding of the dimensions and characteristics of the fire problem, more accurate fire data and program measurement techniques are needed. The Fire Administration's data center is developing a database which is designed as a fire-loss data collection and analyses system to serve as a management tool for states and local communities. Although fire statistics are collected in most states and local communities, incompatible forms, coding systems, and terminology make the information difficult to consolidate and interpret. The Fire Administration estimates that it will take 3 or 4 more years to fully implement the data system. As of November 1977, only 19 states were involved and only 5 states were reporting standard data on a regular basis. While it is too soon to expect the Fire Administration to make an impact on the nation's fire problem, now is an appropriate time to lay the groundwork for a long-range plan to provide a structured basis for development and assessment of programs and a sound basis for budgeting.

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