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10 Posts authored by: mhinds-aldrich Employee
Calling all data system developers! NFPA is looking to procure the professional services of an established firm (alone or in partnership with other firms) with successful experience designing and implementing comprehensive digital solutions for public safety data.  This project is part of a Federal grant-funded activity and will build upon and expand the National Fire Data Systeminfrastructure, specifically around the integration of community risk reduction activity data into other types of fire service activity data.
The intent of this RFP is to solicit proposals for the further development and expansion of an existing Amazon Web Services (AWS)-based data infrastructure to ingest, store, and export community risk reduction activity data from fire departments and other fire service entities. The emphasis for this project is upon improving and expediting data sharing through the development of Application Program Interfaces (APIs) and extensible Extraction, Transformation, & Load (ETL) processes based upon a standardized data sharing format utilizing knowledge graphs.    
Please see the attached PDF for more information. Submit your proposals by February 15, 2019 at 5:00pm EST.


Calling all Data Architects! NFPA is looking to procure Data Architect professional services, from an experienced individual or firm, to design and document a comprehensive and scalable data model and data infrastructure requirements for community risk reduction (CRR) data. This project is part of a Federal grant funded activity and will build upon and link to efforts already underway to build a National Fire Data System, specifically around the integration of community risk reduction data into other types of fire service activity data.

The overall goal of this project is to develop a prototype data model and expand the national fire data system being developed by NFPA for quality local and national data for CRR decision making, by developing a prototype community risk reduction data model and the data infrastructure to gather CRR data from fire departments. The proposed project will convene subject matter experts from the enforcer, public education, CRR, codes & standards, and data communities to identify current best practices and existing data formats to develop a scalable, flexible, CRR data model. Using this data model, the project will expand the backend data infrastructure of the National Fire Data System to ingest, process, store and share CRR data. A key objective is to link disparate data sets and process poorly structured CRR data in any format.

The intent of this RFP is to secure a resource to develop a comprehensive and scalable data model (conceptual, logical and support the development of the physical data model) that utilizes international best-practices in the collection of fire activity data, and design and refine system requirements necessary for the development of a novel Data Lake environment to collect data from fire departments across the United States.

Please see the attached PDF for more information. The deadline has been extended! Submit your proposals by November 22, 2017 at 5:00pm EST.

The National Safety Council recently released it's annual State of Safety report that focused upon three key areas of preventable injuries (and deaths): safety at home, safety at work and safety in transit.  While much of the initial focus and hoopla understandably zeros in on "why did my state get ranked lower than X" (as often happens when someone creates a grading or scoring metric--see the methodology here) the real take away, especially for those in the fire service, is how much we can do to reduce and eliminate preventable injuries and deaths.  The fire service arguably the most well-positioned public safety entity to address many of the leading causes of preventable injuries.  But, the fire service cannot and should not go it alone in trying to reduce these types of preventable injuries.  If there was ever a clarion call for a wholesale adoption of Community Risk Reduction, this is it.  The status quo isn't cutting it.  If we're going to make a significant dent in these numbers we're going to have to focus on and go to where a large number of the identified safety issues reside... homes.  Because, home is where the safety should be.  


From Overdose To Fires, States Aren't Doing Enough Protect Residents, Council Says : NPR 

There is a week to go before the proposals are due for an experienced vendor interested in partnering with NFPA to build a prototype of the new National Fire Data System.  If you haven't read the RfP it is available here along with more information about the NFDS project.  We received several questions seeking clarification from interested parties and the questions and answers are provided here in the attached RfP Appendix. 

Join us this Wednesday May 24th, 2017 from 3-4 pm (15:00 -16:00 Eastern) for an optional pre-bid conference call about the open Request for Proposals to build the proof-of concept, scalable data infrastructure for the new National Fire Data System.  If you have questions or are looking for clarification about the RfP this is a great opportunity to pose them to the team here at NFPA  Here are the call in details:


Phone number:       1.866.546.3377 (Toll Free in USA)

Meeting ID number: 623152#


If you have not had a chance to review the Request for Proposals or are not familiar with the wider project to build a new national fire data system please visit:

Check back here today at 1:15p Eastern to watch the live stream:



I’m excited to participate in the NFPA Rural Fire and Life Safety Symposium later this week. I will be presenting on how data solutions can alleviate many of the challenges fire departments face and how the NFPA Data and Analytics team is working to help the fire service leverage data and create tools for fire departments to better use their own data.  We will discuss a new national fire data system for the US to improve the quality and usability of fire department data across the country.  This presentation will specifically focus upon how NFPA’s investment in Data & Analytics is creating cutting edge big data tools for small departments.    


Join me of Friday, May 12 at the Rural Firefighters Connection on Xchange from 1:15 – 2:15 Eastern time.  Stick around after the presentation.  I will be taking questions from viewers at home!

NFPA is planning a Fire Data Vendor Summit for June 21st, 2017 at NFPA Headquarters in Quincy Mass. If your company works with, sells software to, or otherwise helps fire departments collect, manage, analyze or share data we'd love to have you join us. See the attached open invitation for more information. Please be sure to RSVP so we can be sure to accommodate everyone. See the attached open invitation and FAQs for more information. 

NFPA is soliciting proposals for an established and experienced firm to develop a flexible, scalable, system-agnostic, proof-of-concept data infrastructure and software to ingest, process, store and share fire service activity data from fire departments and other fire service entities.  All proposals are due by June 9th 2017 at 5pm Eastern.  There will be an optional pre-bid conference call on May 24th at 3pm Eastern.  Any additional questions or requests for clarification should be submitted in writing to by May 26th at 5pm Eastern. 

The full RfP document is available for review, click here to download.

More information about the NFDS project is available, click here.

National Fire Data System survey

Do you manage fire data efforts for your organization? We’d like to learn more about how you use data, the tools you use, and what resources you need. Please take a few minutes to complete this survey by Friday the 20th.


In August of 2016, NFPA, with support from IAFF, IAFC, CPSE, NASFM, NVFC, and the Metro Chiefs, received funding from the AFG Fire Prevention and Safety Grants Program to develop a national fire data system (NFDS) that meets the priority needs of the U.S. fire service for quality local and national data for both operations and community risk reduction. It will be designed to be a resource for data to support a broad range of fire department decision making.


The ultimate goal of NFDS is to create a flexible, scalable, and usable data exchange platform that captures fire department activities beyond simply documenting incidents to improve overall how data is collected and used in local communities.


The current grant funding is designed to establish the groundwork for the NFDS, and develop the underlying data system and application requirements. This survey is an important and valuable first step in understanding the current state of data collection among fire service members, and we hope you will take the time to provide your thoughts! 


Fire departments fight fires, but they also deal with an awful lot of other incidents…Bernard Marr recently captured the essence of the modern fire service in his excellent piece on the promise of big data analytics to transform the fire service in Forbes.  Marr highlights the work of firefighter-cum-data scientist Bart van Leeuwen from the Amsterdam fire department and Netage to transform how firefighters operate safely and effectively during emergency incidents using data science.  While this is the most visible, and given the focus on firefighter safety perhaps even the most important way data science can and will transform the fire service, it is not the only way.  Data science is already transforming how fire departments deliver service, identify high risk properties, and document their activities. It may not seem as exciting as robotics, augmented reality and other emerging technology used on scene, but this is the area where data science holds the most promise.  NFPA is leading the way in transforming this knowledge and information by:

  • Exploring the application of graph theory and data shapes to the NFIRS dataset— the secret sauce behind TurboTax®;
  • Building a Data Solutions Portal that will provide the fire service with a modern one-stop-data-shop for data to drill down into their local fire problem;
  • And, more ambitiously building a new national fire data system that will transform how data is collected and utilized by the fire rescue service.

NFPA is at the forefront of the data analytics paradigm shift for the fire service.  At a time when the “do more with less” mantra has reached a fever pitch, data science holds many of the keys to helping fire departments understand their fire problem and tell their story to keep firefighters and the communities they protect safer. 

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