Organized fire fighting began in New York in 1648 when the Dutch Settlement of New Amsterdam adopted the first Fire Ordinance. It was not until 74 years later, in 1731, that fire brigades were put into service. Following the Revolutionary War, the Department was reorganized and incorporated as the Fire Department of the City of New York (FDNY). The merit system of promotion in the Fire Department was instituted in 1870. Today the Fire Department protects more than 8,000,000 residents in an area of 320 square miles. The Fire Commissioner appointed by and responsible to the Mayor administers the department. The uniformed force is under the command of the Chief of Department and consists of more than 11,400 Fire Officers and fire fighters. In addition, the Department includes 2,800 Emergency Medical Technicians, Paramedics and Supervisors assigned to the Bureau of Emergency Medical Service (EMS), as well as 1200 civilian employees. .
In this paper the Fire Department mission will be explained along with its importance. The executive selection including its structure, ranking and personnel management will further be explained in detail. Furthermore, the agencies policies such as its functions and its collective bargaining issues with union(s) representing fire department personnel will be explained. Criticisms of the fire department, good and bad will be touched on leading to the effectiveness and productivity of the agency. Finally, the impact of the September 11th attack on the fire department and the steps taken by the department to address the post 9/11 problems will conclude this paper. .
"The Fire Department protects the life and property of City residents and visitors from fire and critical health threats through its five primary operations: response to fire emergencies; response to medical emergencies; fire prevention, .
Including code enforcement, building and other inspections; criminal and cause-and-origin investigation and public fire safety education.