Survey of Fire Departments for United States Fire Experience During 2016

Fire Chiefs or authorized designees are being asked to complete this annual survey on behalf of their fire departments. This survey is significant to NFPA’s understanding of the U.S. Fire Experience, and the results enable the NFPA, USFA, and CPSC to develop national estimates for fire causes based on the annual National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS) data. As well, the survey is a method to maintain the legacy of valid fire related statistics should the NFIRS disappear due to lack of funding. The survey results also enable NFPA to create the following reports:

This survey was mailed out to 20,490 fire departments. An NFPA code and password are required to access and complete it. This can be found on the paper survey you have received. If you have not received this information, or want to begin the process before receiving the letter, contact us by email or toll-free at +1 800-343-8890. Get answers to frequently asked questions.

There are two ways to fill out the survey.

Deadline to fill out the survey is May 2. (contingent on the response rate at the time)

NFPA's Hylton Haynes talks about the importance of filling out NFPA's fire experience survey, and how you can get started.

Frequently asked questions

What is a NFPA code number?
It is the identification number NFPA has assigned to your fire department (NFPA FDID number) for NFPA’s internal database. 

Where can I find my NFPA code number?
Your fire department’s NFPA code number is located in the top left corner of the address window of the printed survey you received in the mail.

Is the code number different from the NFIRS number? 
Yes. The NFPA created this code number long before NFIRS came into existence. To maintain the integrity of NFPA’s fire service database the maintenance of this unique identifier (code number) is important. In this survey you will also be asked to provide your NFIRS number. The hope is to reconcile these two numbers in the future. 

What if I don’t know my NFPA FDID number? 
Call +1 800 343-8890 or e-mail. Give us the name of your fire department and zip code and we will provide you with your NFPA code number. 

Where can I find my fire department’s password for the fire experience survey? 
The password is located in the top right corner of the address window of the printed survey you received in the mail. You do not need to save the password because it’s a unique password for this survey and will only be used this one time. 

Is the password the same as my password for the NFPA website and/or access to NFPA member material on NFPA’s website?
The password for the fire experience survey is a one-time use password and it is not associated with any other NFPA passwords. 

What if I don’t have my password for the electronic survey? 
Call +1 800 343-8890 or e-mail us. Provide the name of your fire department and zip code and you will be provided with your password. 

Will my responses to the survey be kept confidential? 
All identifiers are removed from the data received from the surveys and results are presented in an aggregated form to ensure that the data cannot be attributed back to your fire department. 

Who qualifies as a designee?
Anyone the fire chief assigns to complete the survey. 

Can more than one person submit a survey?
No, only one submittal per fire department will be accepted. 

What if I don’t have my NFIRS FDID number?
Not a problem, you can still complete the survey. 

If I close the electronic survey, can I return to survey? 
Just click on link again and you will be asked again to provide your NFPA FDID and password. The survey will pick up at the last question you answered. 

Does the electronic survey automatically save after each entry? 
Yes. You do not need save your work. If you leave survey and come back to continue, the survey will pick up at the last question you answered. 

How do I make a change after I have submitted or mailed the survey? 
Contact us, and we will assist you. 

I forgot to keep a copy of my survey, how do I get a copy?
Contact us, and we will assist you. 

When did the survey start? 
The first mailing of the survey went out on January 18. A second mailing will be sent on March 14. 

What is the deadline for submitting the survey? 
Please complete the survey by May 2.

I lost my return envelope, how do I get the survey back to NFPA?

  • Option 1: Submit your responses using the online survey.
  • Option 2: Scan and e-mail completed survey.
  • Option 3: Mail to NFPA, Fire Analysis & Research Division, 1 Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02169 Contact information for assistance Toll Free: +1 800 343-8890; E-mail:; Fax: 617-984-7478