An Algorithm for the Initial Dispatch of Fire Companies

by Grace M. Carter, Edward Ignall, Kenneth Lloyd Rider


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Documentation of a procedure (algorithm) for deciding how many and which fire companies to dispatch to a newly reported incident. The algorithm was designed to be implemented in the New York City Fire Department’s computerized Management Information and Control System (MICS), an on-line, real-time system that provides easy entry of up-to-date information about the status of each company. A static procedure, called “adaptive response,” can substitute for the full, dynamic algorithm in cities with low to moderate alarm rates; no computer is required.

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