Mantee area achieves better fire rating

By Russell Hood The Webster Progress-Times

A new fire insurance ranking for Mantee should mean reduced rates for home and business owners within the city limits.

The Mississippi State Rating Bureau has graded Mantee a Class 8, which is up from its Class 9 rating.

“We are very proud of this accomplishment,” Fire Chief David Brand said in announcing the new rating, which took effect June 18.

Ratings, which are based on such items as fire staffing and equipment, and water capacity and pressure, are how insurance premiums are based. They range from first class, which is the best, to 10th class, which is the worst. The highest classification currently achieved in Mississippi is a 3, which Jackson and Southaven have both earned.

Brand said the Mantee Volunteer Fire Department and village have been working on lowering the community’s fire rating for five years. Mantee was able to meet all the requirements for a Class 8 rating after a new elevated water tank went online last summer, he said. The new tank has doubled the capacity of the village’s old one and provides increased hydrant flow.

Additional factors that put Mantee closer to its goal included awarding of a grant in 2008 for a new Class A pumper. Also, the fire department increased its manpower and is on a monthly training schedule.

“They (the MSRB) require eight to 10 firefighters respond to every structure fire,” Brand said. Documented hydrant inspections are also required. Generally, the lower a community’s fire rating, the lower the insurance premiums will be for homes and businesses in that protection district.