A few years back we lost a good friend. Jo died in her house in Deer Creek of an asthma attack while the paramedics waited outside her home for a deputy sheriff to arrive. The rules required that a law enforcement officer be present before EMTs enter a residence. Has this rule been updated? I hope so.
Tuesday’s Roundup story on the fire at the Deer Creek residence causes some concern for other friends living there. The Roundup reported that the Tonto Basin fire chief said he wasn’t going to send his crew at first because he “didn’t want to put his district at risk.”
This excuse could be used by many agencies to avoid answering an emergency call. In Payson, the fire department on Main Street could avoid backing up the Tyler Parkway boys because the theater just might catch on fire. The police may not want to tie up their last patrol car while the other five cars on duty are making a DUI bust.
“Roundup photographer Andy Towle arrived just before firefighters” — did Andy speed? Should he have received a citation? — Not the good kind that the firemen get.
“Although Payson Fire Department heard the call over the scanner, crews waited until the Forest Service called for aid.”
I tried to report a fire at the base of Slate Creek Hill a while back by calling 911. My call was transferred to the Forest Service by the 911 dispatcher while I was trying to explain that I was getting out of phone range. I never got to talk to anyone ... they probably didn’t want to tie up the line in case a bigger emergency was called in.
Back to Deer Creek: “By the time anyone got there, the final result was already apparent,” said the Payson fire chief. (There was nothing left of the home.)
I say, “Good call, Chief.”
To the good people of Deer Creek, this might be a good time for you to do a land swap with the Forest Service ... I hear they have a lot of vacant land just across Highway 260 from Gila Community College; and yes, there’s a brand spanking new fire station just east of you ... still new and in the package.