Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I've never...

....heard of anything so absurd. Well, actually I have heard some pretty absurd things, but this one is a step above - or below- many others.

Firefighters in rural Indiana did not respond to a 911 call about a house-fire because the owners had failed to pay the annual $75.00 fee to the city for rural fire protection. Apparently the city has a law that firefighters cannot respond under those circumstances, so they had to ignore the call.

Imagine how hard that must have been for the firefighters. I have always likened them to the knights of old who are called to rescue those in distress. The ones I have known have always considered the job much more than a job, and it would distress them to be held back by words on a document.

In this incident in Indiana, the firefighters did respond to a call from a nearby neighbor who was concerned about the fire spreading to his house, but they could do nothing about the house that was burning to the ground right in front of them.

A city official was quoted as saying that the firefighters had to abide by the law. "If they put out the fire of a homeowner who had not paid, there is no incentive for other people to pay."

So a house burns down, but, by gosh, the law was upheld.

Maybe if the firefighters were allowed to put out all the fires they were called to, which is what they are trained to do, homeowners would be so grateful they would pay the fee twice over.  Ever think of that all you folks who are stuck to the letter of the law?

5 comments:

Laura Eno said...

Absolutely ridiculous! On the other hand, who voted this law in?

Maryann Miller said...

Interesting question, Laura. If I had more time I would investigate to see if this is a law that was passed by open vote, or an ordinance passed by the city officials. Have too much work stacked up today to follow my curiosity.

Helen Ginger said...

I can see the reasoning, but it fails the humanity test. How awful for the family and for the firefighters. I have firefighters in my family and I know they would hate to have to stand by and watch a home burn.

Something needs to change in that community to make sure this doesn't happen again.

The Words Crafter said...

I read this on the internet somewher earlier this week. The pets died in the fire-how fair was that? GGGrrrrr!

Maryann Miller said...

Word Crafter, I did not know about the pets dying in the fire. I agree, GRRRR.