In Louisville, City Accelerator efforts help target fire prevention education to at-risk citizens

In 2014, the city of Louisville was selected to participate in the first cohort of the Living Cities’ City Accelerator program, an initiative that works to advance urban innovations that will have a significant impact in the lives of residents, especially low-income residents. As a part of this initiative, Louisville piloted its combined improvement and innovation system through applying an inter-agency approach to problem solving in the area of fire service delivery.

Employees from multiple departments worked together to share and analyze their data to produce insights into how best to serve citizens from a cross-functional perspective, thereby reducing any existing duplicate efforts and creating a more targeted, data-driven approach to service delivery.

Map of Clients’ Neighborhoods with Fires

For the analysis, structure fire data from the Louisville Fire Department (LFD) was analyzed against client data from the department of Community Services (CS). This revealed that nearly 22% of all fire incidents occurred in a home of a Community Services’ client. The majority (57%) of these fires also occurred in fire districts one and two, which encompass many of Louisville’s lowest-income neighborhoods. With these insights, leadership teams from both LFD and CS came together to problem-solve on the most impactful ways to address these findings. Chosen solutions included:

  • The development and implementation of a fire safety cross-training and educational materials for CS caseworkers
  • The creation of a Fire Safety Checklist Tool to be used by caseworkers during home visits with clients
  • The establishment of a notification process between LFD and CS to alert LFD of homes that have been identified to be without a smoke detector

Currently, these solutions are in the process of being developed and implemented. Looking ahead, Louisville hopes to continue to embed these innovative practices into the daily work of all city departments, using the example of LFD and CS as a model. Louisville’s Office of Performance Improvement & Innovation will continue to support these efforts through the work of their office in the areas of strategic planning, performance management, continuous improvement, and innovation.

To learn more about the Office of Performance Improvement, you can visit their webpage by clicking here.