first_imgAs the Vancouver City Council tries to stabilize the fire department’s budget without gutting services, councilors focused their attention Monday on a different set of numbers.Chief Joe Molina and Deputy Chief Dan Olson reported the department’s response times. A 2005 state law requires fire departments to specify targeted response times, and then report annually on how well those targets are met. There’s no minimum standard response time, Olson said, but each agency has to set goals.The clock on the response time, Olson said, starts when a call is received at the firehouse and ends when the first unit arrives at the fire. He explained that the times reflect the 90th percentile — that is, 90 percent of calls have a response time equal to or faster than what’s listed as the response time.For priority 1 and 2 calls — fires and the most critical medical calls — the current response time is 7 minutes, 59 seconds. For priority 3 and 4 (less critical) calls, the response time is 10 minutes, 59 seconds.For the priority 5 calls — an example would be a person who fell but isn’t seriously injured — that would be an ambulance-only response and the response time is 15 minutes, 59 seconds.last_img