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Protection Class Updates

Robert Ferrell
February 19, 2019

Providing our Subscribers with the best possible information and data to evaluate risk is our mission.

We are constantly searching for new sources of information and, as technology and the world change, we must adapt and evolve to ensure you have the appropriate data. As we evaluated our Public Protection and Building Code Effectiveness Grading Schedule (BCEGS®) Classification Manual, we noted that revisions were needed to accommodate the advances in fire protection methodologies and services.

With the approval of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner (OIC), the revisions to the Public Protection/BCEGS Classification Manual for Washington will go into effect on March 1, 2019. The Public Protection/BCEGS manual contains the rules and regulations for determining the protection class (PC) and BCEGS rating for an individual property in Washington state.

Red water coverWater supply is one factor included in protection class evaluations.


The WSRB Guide to Community Ratings


Revision highlights

For all of the revisions, Subscribers can log in to review the updated manual. Today, we will review the major changes that will make the biggest impact to a property’s PC.

Introduction of a Mobile Water Supply Credit

This credit applies in areas without fire hydrant coverage but located in a community with water hauling capabilities exceeding the requirements of Tender Credit. Tender Credit, sometimes referred to as Tanker Credit, is applied to communities that have demonstrated the capability of supplying water for firefighting purposes in areas without fire hydrants at the minimum rate of 250 gallons per minute (gpm) continuously for 30 minutes.

The minimum duration for Mobile Water Supply Credit is two hours, which is more demanding than the 30-minute requirement for Tender Credit. This credit could improve the PC rating of properties without fire hydrant coverage in communities that can meet the credit criteria.

Additional credit for class-rated commercial properties

This applies to commercial properties located between five and seven road miles from a recognized responding fire station, and where the property is within 1,000 feet of a standard fire hydrant or the community receives Mobile Water Supply Credit. This change is based on insurance loss data indicating a reduction in losses for properties between five and seven road miles from a fire station where reliable water supplies are available.

An adjustment to the PC rating for properties outside a recognized fire jurisdiction to better reflect contracted fire department protection from a neighboring jurisdiction, if any

This revision is in response to feedback from property owners and insurers to better account for the varying levels of fire suppression capabilities routinely provided to properties outside a recognized fire jurisdiction.

WSRB is the authoritative resource for assigning an accurate PC and BCEGS Classification for a property in the state of Washington. WSRB's Protection incorporates the classification manual rules and additional information regarding community grades, boundaries, fire stations, and fire hydrants to produce automated PCs and BCEGS classes for individual class-rated properties, simplifying the application of the manual rules for WSRB Subscribers.

A copy of the revised Public Protection/BCEGS Classification Manual is available for your review on the Subscriber portion of the website. You can also obtain a copy by calling us at 206-217-0101.


Robert Ferrell, P.E. is WSRB’s Vice President of Public Protection. He leads the team that manages the insurance rating of cities, fire districts and building departments throughout Washington state. He has more than 25 years of experience in fire insurance rating.



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