Dear Editor: My sister had a minor traffic accident over the holidays and I happened to be in the area right when it happened and waited with her for a sheriff’s car to arrive. When we called, we told the 911 operator that there were no injuries. A little while later two big Newton County Fire trucks arrived. Being a retired firefighter from another state, I struck up a conversation with one of the county guys. I was curious as to how the call was dispatched since we told 911 there were no injuries. The firefighter explained to me that they had been instructed to roll on any accident whether there were injuries or not and the reason there were two trucks was because 911 would dispatch several trucks and the first one would cancel the others. This is ridiculous. We are in a time where our county has been cutting people and looking at cutting services. With all the money we have spent on our 911 and communications system, why are we sending multiple fire trucks out with no reason? They day of the accident the trucks sat there for a few minutes, the firemen talked to the deputy and then they left.
I would like to warn the commissioners and even city council members, when the fire chiefs come asking for more money saying that they are responding to increased calls, to ask them for detailed information on the types of calls. Looks to me it would be easy to boost your call volume rolling trucks on petty incidents. Those big trucks use a lot of fuel. I know! Our government needs to start pinching pennies just like businesses. Speaking of pinching pennies, why doesn’t the city and county merge their fire departments? We did that in my home state; the citizens were better served and the savings were tremendous.