Report: No confidence LAFD response times are accurate

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An initial assessment of the Los Angeles Fire Department’s software systems that track response times finds there are problems with the calculations and there is no confidence that the data is accurate, according to a report provided this evening by the mayor’s office.

The findings from Jeffrey Godown are expected to be reviewed by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and fire Chief Brian Cummings tomorrow during a private meeting. Godown was appointed interim director of Statistical Analysis and Review for the LAFD at the end of March after discrepancies were discovered in the department’s response times.

In his 30-day assessment, Godown describes LAFD’s use of two systems to track response times – a Computer Automated Dispatch System and Deccan International. The two systems produce different response times, according to the report.

“My initial assessment of both systems reveal that there is a problem with the calculations of the response times,” Godown wrote in his report to the mayor. “When both systems are run using the same criteria, different response time data is produced.”

“I am not confident that the data represented by the department’s reports is accurate until further research is concluded,” he wrote.

Both the Los Angeles Times and the controller’s office have requested response data from the CAD system for 2007 through 2012. The findings are likely to be different than statistics reported by the LAFD, Godown reports.

The mayor has directed Godown to implement a data-based system similar to one used by the Los Angeles Police Department. That unit will eventually be run by two civilian employees who report to the fire chief, according to the report.

The Board of Fire Commissioners will meet tomorrow at City Hall East at 9 a.m.

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