The Public Information Officer is the liaison between the Birmingham Fire And Rescue Service Department and media outlets. The primary responsibility of the Public Information Officer (P. I. O.) is to disseminate accurate and factual information to the citizens of our community concerning incidents and issues affecting the fire department.
The P. I. O. promotes and fosters the positive image of the fire department through the coordination of visual, audio and print media relations. Other duties include on-scene interviews, safety presentations, and public affairs, preparing news releases and public service announcements.
During 2004, the Public Information Officer led the "Get Alarmed Birmingham" smoke detector campaign. This initiative was designed to provide free smoke detectors to Birmingham residents. Prior to 2003, the City of Birmingham averaged 13 fire deaths annually. Since its inception in October 2002, "Get Alarmed Birmingham" has helped to reduced the fire fatalities in Birmingham by 50%.
Additionally, the Public Information Officer responded to more than 120 emergency incidents. The P.I.O. conducted 332 media-related/public service functions, totaling more than 800 hours of public relations activities. The Public Information Officer is on-call twenty-four (24) hours a day, seven (7) days a week.