National Fire Department Census quick facts

Fire departments registered

As of Jan. 2016, there were 27,198 fire departments registered with the National Fire Department Census. This is about 91 percent of all U.S. fire departments. Census registration is voluntary.

Estimated

91%

of fire departments are registered with the census

Fire departments by region

The majority of the registered departments are located in the Southern and Midwestern states. The map shows the percentage distribution of fire departments by U.S. Census Bureau Region. Less than 1 percent of the registered fire departments are located in U.S. territories.

Percentage of registered fire departments by region – Jan. 2016 1

South 35%
Midwest 31%
Northeast 21%
West 13%

Number of registered fire departments by state and territories (Jan. 2016)

State Count
Total 27,198
Alabama 800
Alaska 157
Arizona 249
Arkansas 679
California 872
Colorado 325
Connecticut 251
Delaware 58
District of Columbia 3
Florida 477
Georgia 463
Hawaii 11
Idaho 194
Illinois 1,104
Indiana 763
Iowa 731
Kansas 502
Kentucky 680
Louisiana 420
Maine 338
Maryland 262
Massachusetts 362
Michigan 966
Minnesota 726
Mississippi 416
Missouri 771
Montana 279
Nebraska 391
Nevada 86
New Hampshire 212
New Jersey 712
New Mexico 244
New York 1,665
North Carolina 1,083
North Dakota 325
Ohio 1,144
Oklahoma 742
Oregon 307
Pennsylvania 1,796
Rhode Island 72
South Carolina 441
South Dakota 293
Tennessee 638
Texas 1,528
Utah 195
Vermont 203
Virginia 548
Washington 399
West Virginia 412
Wisconsin 777
Wyoming 115
U.S. territories 11

Stations

Fire departments registered with the census represent approximately 50,700 fire stations across the country. 2


Organization type and personnel


Department type

Of the fire departments registered with the census: 4, 5

Department type by state – Jan. 2016

Percentage of registered volunteer and mostly volunteer fire departments, top five states by rank

98.3%
Delaware

97.2%
Minnesota

97.1%
Pennsylvania

96.9%
North Dakota

96.6%
South Dakota

Percentage of registered career and mostly career fire departments, top five states by rank

90.9%
Hawaii

51.8%
Florida

43.6%
Massachusetts

42.7%
Arizona

41.8%
California

Percentage of fire departments registered with the census by department type within each state 5

State Volunteer Mostly volunteer Mostly career Career
Total 71.0 16.0 4.5 8.5
Alabama 79.8 8.9 3.5 7.7
Alaska 59.4 29.7 1.9 9.0
Arizona 30.9 26.4 17.5 25.2
Arkansas 84.1 9.3 2.8 3.7
California 29.4 28.9 16.7 25.1
Colorado 46.2 31.4 8.9 13.5
Connecticut 61.8 23.1 4.0 11.2
Delaware 46.6 51.7 0.0 1.7
District of Columbia 0.0 0.0 33.3 66.7
Florida 35.0 13.2 17.0 34.8
Georgia 51.1 24.1 8.9 15.9
Hawaii 9.1 0.0 18.2 72.7
Idaho 59.1 30.6 2.6 7.8
Illinois 66.9 14.5 6.8 11.9
Indiana 74.8 13.9 2.6 8.7
Iowa 90.1 5.8 0.8 3.3
Kansas 79.5 10.8 3.8 6.0
Kentucky 75.6 16.1 3.3 5.0
Louisiana 50.2 36.7 4.3 8.8
Maine 73.7 21.0 2.7 2.7
Maryland 60.5 28.0 4.6 6.9
Massachusetts 27.3 29.0 17.1 26.5
Michigan 66.0 21.0 3.7 9.3
Minnesota 87.9 9.3 0.8 1.9
Mississippi 71.2 15.9 3.8 9.1
Missouri 72.8 12.8 5.2 9.2
Montana 84.2 10.0 1.1 4.7
Nebraska 92.5 3.6 1.5 2.3
Nevada 55.3 24.7 8.2 11.8
New Hampshire 54.5 31.8 9.0 4.7
New Jersey 75.7 13.6 3.5 7.2
New Mexico 78.6 10.3 2.9 8.2
New York 90.0 4.6 1.1 4.2
North Carolina 63.2 28.3 4.1 4.4
North Dakota 92.3 4.6 0.0 3.1
Ohio 61.1 21.9 4.7 12.2
Oklahoma 81.5 10.2 2.2 6.1
Oregon 44.0 46.3 3.9 5.9
Pennsylvania 90.2 6.9 0.4 2.5
Rhode Island 38.0 23.9 11.3 26.8
South Carolina 55.7 26.5 9.8 8.0
South Dakota 92.2 4.4 0.3 3.1
Tennessee 74.8 12.6 5.3 7.2
Texas 71.9 13.2 4.9 10.1
Utah 67.4 20.2 5.7 6.7
Vermont 88.1 8.4 2.5 1.0
Virginia 72.8 16.3 4.4 6.6
Washington 40.8 39.0 8.8 11.3
West Virginia 90.9 4.7 1.5 2.9
Wisconsin 80.5 12.1 1.8 5.5
Wyoming 72.2 17.4 0.0 10.4
U.S. territories 9.1 0.0 18.2 72.7

State totals may not add up to 100 percent due to rounding.


Specialized services

Percentage of registered fire departments providing specialized services – Jan. 2016

Specialized service provided Percentage
Vehicle extrication 75.8
Fire/Injury prevention/Public education 61.1
Wildfire/Wildland Urban Interface 61.0
Basic Life Support 58.0
Emergency Medical Services (EMS) nontransport response 38.0
Fire investigation/Fire cause determination 34.4
Fire inspection/Code enforcement 34.2
Technical/Specialized rescue 34.2
Departmental (in-house) training academy 22.1
Advanced Life Support 20.6
EMS ambulance transport 20.6
Hazardous materials team 17.5
Juvenile firesetter intervention program 13.5
Airport/Aviation 7.7
Fireboat 4.2

Notes

  1. The regions of the U.S. are defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as the Northeast (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont); South (Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia); Midwest (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin); and West (Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming).
  2. For counties in Maryland, Nevada and Virginia where it is known that both the county-level fire department registered with the census and the individual fire departments affiliated with that county department also registered, the computation of the number of stations includes only the number of stations reported by the county-level department to avoid counting stations twice.
  3. There were 107 fire departments that did not provide the number of active firefighting personnel. These departments were excluded from this analysis. For counties in Maryland, Nevada and Virginia where it is known that both the county-level fire department registered with the census and the individual fire departments affiliated with that county department also registered, the computation of the number of personnel includes only the personnel counts reported by the county-level department to avoid counting personnel twice. Numbers of personnel were rounded to the nearest 100.
  4. The department type is based on the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) definition (Career: 100 percent of a department’s firefighters are career; Mostly Career: 51-99 percent of a department’s firefighters are career; Mostly Volunteer: 1-50 percent of a department’s firefighters are career; Volunteer: 100 percent of a department’s firefighters are volunteer).
  5. The number of fire department personnel are used to determine the department type. There were 107 fire departments that did not provide the number of active firefighting personnel. These departments were excluded from this analysis.

Last modified date: Dec 6, 2016