Md. FD makes fire, EMS response data available to public on new website
The Anne Arundel County Fire Department data website is another way county officials are demonstrating transparency
By Luke Parker
The Capital, Annapolis
ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY, Md. — The Anne Arundel County Fire Department unveiled a dashboard Thursday that allows members of the public to take an in-depth look at its response and transport data.
Available on the county government’s website, the dashboard allows users to take a deeper dive into the thousands of calls the department and its 31 stations respond to every month.
Specifically, data can be filtered by month, call type (EMS, fire, service, and vehicle or rescue), hospital transport destination, location or council districts. Updated at the beginning of every month, the dashboard gives real-time data over a six- and 12-month period.
The dashboard represents another demonstration of transparency by county officials. Earlier this year, the Anne Arundel County Police Department launched public-facing dashboards highlighting its own response data, including its uses of force and conduct complaints.
In a statement, Anne Arundel Fire Chief Trisha L. Wolford said, “Our team is committed to continuously improving our services to ensure that Anne Arundel County remains ‘The Best Place-For All.’”
For the four broader categories of calls, the monthly data gets more specific.
— Fire calls: Users can see how many structure fires, alarms, smoke or gas investigations and other fire events the department responds to.
— EMS calls: The number of monthly medical emergencies, cardiac or respiratory incidents, trauma events, strokes, cardiac arrests, overdoses and shootings the department is involved in are available for review.
— Service calls: The dashboard outlines the number of times fire marshal codes are enforced, the department offers aid to a fellow company, or performs general calls for service. Users can also see the number of times the department completes a safe station call, which occurs when someone struggling with addiction or substance abuse visits a fire or police station for assistance.
— Vehicle and rescue calls: Users can see the number of motor vehicle crashes the fire department responded to, as well as water or boat emergencies and technical rescues. This data also includes the number of hazmat calls the department was involved in during any given month.
Between January and July, the Anne Arundel County Fire Department responded to more than 47,000 calls, according to the dashboard, approximately 70% of which involved EMS, while 11% were fire responses.
Additionally, the department has responded to four fire events this year in which someone has died.
On June 10, Marianne Forrest, 62, died inside her Annapolis home after it caught fire overnight. According to a news release, it took about 60 firefighters, including crews from the Annapolis Fire Department and the U.S. Naval Academy Fire Department, about an hour to bring the blaze under control.
On June 5, Mark A. Harvey, 50, died after intentionally lighting a fire in the attic of a Severn home during a mental health crisis. Eventually, the roof collapsed, and Harvey fell through the attic floor.
On May 5, Anthony Slough, 59, died when a single-family home in Glen Burnie caught fire. The house Slough was living in did not have smoke detectors, officials said.
On May 3, John S. Billing, 54, died from injuries sustained in a fire at his Pasadena home, which did not have working smoke detectors. Anne Arundel County and Annapolis investigators said they were unable to determine the cause of the fire.
To access the Anne Arundel County Fire Department’s call for service dashboard, please visit aacounty.org/fire-department/statistics-dashboard.