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Illinois Fire Departments are required by State Law to report all fire incidents to the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS). NFIRS is administered by the United States Fire Administration. Illinois Fire Departments are required to submit their data directly to USFA system. Data submission can be done through directly entering their incidents using the NFIRS 5.70 Data Entry client or by exporting data from third party vendor software. NFIRS 5.70 is a modified and improved National Fire Incident Reporting System that has been designed as a tool for FDs to report and maintain computerized records of fires and other FD incidents in a uniformed manner. NFIRS 5.0 was developed by the United States Fire Administration (USFA) in partnership with National Fire Information Council (NFIC). Additional information on NFIRS 5.70 can be found by visiting www.nfirs.fema.gov. Third party software must be certified by the USFA. For a list vendor certification, information please visit www.nfirs.fema.gov/vendors/.
The USFA is having a lot of issues with the NFIRS system. We made a convenient page with the latest and other relevant notices. Please visit this page USFA Notices to see these notices.
The Illinois Office of the State Fire Marshal requires fire departments to be compliant with their NFIRS reporting to be eligible for state grants and loans programs. We strongly suggest that Illinois Fire Departments report all of their activities in the NFIRS system. In order to be NFIRS compliant, departments only need to complete fire incident reports or applicable "No Activity" Reports (if the department had no fire incidents that month). Departments are required to submit their monthly incidents by the 15th of following month.
Once you complete your reports, please (upload the incidents if you are using a 3rd party vendor) follow the new procedures below: You are no longer required to send a monthly email to the NFIRS Staff. Make sure you click on the links below & verify/correct your data.
Data quality verifications will be implemented on all incidents that contain a response time of over 30 minutes, any invalid incidents, incidents with a dollar loss of over one million dollars and all civilian and fire service casualties.
The agency has built a database server, which has a copy of Federal NFIRS data. We import data from the USFA twice a month, on the 5th and 20th of each month. A report is then generated which shows each department's NFIRS reporting status. This report will be posted on a server, which can be accessed through the FD Portal and directly through the internet. This new procedure will start January 1, 2010. This file can be accessed directly at the following link.
NFIRS Incident Reporting by Fire Department -- [PDF, 3.7Mb].
Illinois Fire Departments may request NFIRS retraining. You can come to our office for retraining any Monday through Thursday, 9am - 4pm. if four or more departments participate, we are available to do sessions at your fire department. Please contact our office for all retrain requests.
We import all federal NFIRS data into a local database. This import is done on the 5th and 20th (or next working day) of each month. We use this database to generate statistical reports. A State Overview Report is generated for the current year and two previous years' data. Click on the following link for this report [PDF, 1.11MB].
Please contact our office if you have any questions or issues about your NFIRS reporting. Please include your FDID number when you fill out the contact form.
Question: Are we required to report our NFIRS incidents monthly?
Answer: Yes. Fire Departments are required by legislation to report monthly. Electronic reports are due the 15th of each month following the occurrence of the incident. Example: Incidents that occur in January are due by February 15.
Question: Are we required to report even if the department did not have any calls for the month?
Answer: Yes. If your department had no activity of any type for the month, you must complete an electronic No Activity report. The report date should be the last date of the month you are reporting for and the incident number should be seven zeros (0000000).
Question: When reporting electronically may we export multiple months in one file?
Answer: Yes. Multiple months may be exported to one file depending on the size. However, to be NFIRS compliant, you are required to report your incidents monthly. Please reference http://www.nfirs.fema.gov/webtools/biu/biuinfo.shtm for more information.
Question: I tried to log into USFA and it says my account is locked? What do I do?
Answer: You must log into USFA at least once every 30 days to keep your account active. Passwords are required to be changed every 89 days. If you need help resetting your password, please send us a request using our contact us section on the main NFIRS page.
Question: If reporting electronically what methods can be used?
Answer: Any software approved by USFA may be used to generate and/or upload reports. Free software provided by the USFA may be downloaded at http://www.nfirs.fema.gov/NFIRSWebTools/UserServices/home/userHome.do. You may also see a list of Active and Registered vendors at http://www.nfirs.fema.gov/vendors/.
Question: Are we required to notify OSFM of fire related deaths?
Answer: Yes. Any civilian fire-related deaths must be reported to the OSFM within 24 hours of the death. Please call, fax or email the office with the name, sex, date of death and FDID number. Follow up by completing the civilian casualty module.
Question: Are property and content loss required on my reports?
Answer: Yes. At the state level, property & content loss for fires must be included on your report. This section of the report is not admissible in court and is an estimate only. You may visit www.saylor.com to obtain a more accurate estimate. Use www.kbb.com for vehicle fire estimates. Three types of incidents that do not need the property/content loss are: 1) If your department is giving mutual aid, 2) Outside trash/rubbish fires (contained) or 3) Non-fire coded incidents.
Question: Is it required to add the FDID and incident number of the department receiving mutual aid?
Answer: At the state level, Illinois requires departments receiving aid to add the FDID# to the report. Incident numbers are not required to be added at this time. A list of FDID numbers is available on the OSFM website at http://www.sfm.illinois.gov/fireservice/fdlist.aspx.
Question: How will fire departments be notified of any changes or updates to the NFIRS Program
Answer: Any changes, announcements or updates will be posted on the OSFM website at http://www.sfm.illinois.gov/fireservice/nfirs.aspx or sent by email to your OSFM email account at: http://fdmail.sfm.illinois.gov/. If you need help with your OSFM FD Mail Account, please send us a request using our contact us section on the main NFIRS page.