Our safety truly matters

By From page A8 | March 19, 2013

Stupidity. Corruption. Lack of fear or repercussion or accountability. Take your pick. All of these are reasons Rich Rifkin can write whatever he wants regardless of the truth, or lack their of, behind it.

I am proud that our City Council had the patience and insight and intelligence to see through Chief Scott Kenley’s sales pitch to add budgetary dollars to administration, of which he would like a job, and take it from the actual firemen and women doing their jobs.

There are so many inaccuracies in Rifkin’s article, that it blows my mind. So, I will stick to what many of us hold most dear and feel is most important — our public safety. More important that any budgetary amount between three- and four-person engines, is life safety. Not only could the reduced staffing result in more property damage, and with that the loss of what most of us hold most dear after our loved ones — our photos, our memories.

Chief Kenley will not address how one would know if someone is asleep or sick or trapped in the house when an engine arrives on scene. Currently, with four people arriving in one engine, two could go inside and two would remain outside, ensuring that a home is vacant and fighting the fire from the inside out. However, with three people on a single engine, no one could enter the burning structure until a second truck arrived from another station. Therefore, firefighting begins on the outside, pushing the fire inwards, where all our memories, belongings and, most importantly, loved ones could be trapped. Not BMWs, Mr. Rifkin, people.

What is a life worth to you? Not the inflated figure of $570,000 you published, which was actually more accurately $360,000, per the City Council meeting.

The fact that our citizens rallied when they heard Kenley’s recommendations speaks volumes. The fact that the City Council listened means they actually represent the interests they were elected to serve. They understand that our safety matters.

Wendy Benner


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