The Houston Fire Department is trying to find a better way to allocate resources. They gave graduate students from Rice University data on emergency calls and asked them to identify trends.
The students did an extensive analysis of 911 calls over the past several years and presented their findings Tuesday to Houston City Council.
The fire department had around 30,000 emergency calls last year. The research found only 12 percent of HFD's calls actually involve fires.
The vast majority of the department’s calls are EMS events. But a fire truck was dispatched in more than 25 percent of the medical calls because an ambulance was not available.
"It's not the best use of resources to be sending an apparatus to what might be a minor medical call," said HFD Chief Samuel Pena.