Saturday, August 29, 2009

The inmates are running the asylum

So, I'm in Austin visiting and on the news this morning was a report that the Austin Fire Chief had ordered that Fire Engines responding to emergencies could not exceed the speed limit and must come to a complete stop at all intersections. The firefighters union was fighting this and had won some concessions. Is this person INSANE? Their reasoning is that, it is for the safety of the public to prevent accidents while responding to emergencies. I will admit that this does happen but it is a rare thing. Most emergency vehicle operators follow state law which requires that they exercise due regard when running code. Most are even better than that and are actively looking for the idiots out there who are too self absorbed to be bothered to move out of the way safely. While there are some exceptions and collisions do occur due to the EVO not paying adequate attention or more likely some dumbass not yeilding when they should because they are more important that anything the emergency vehicle may be up to, the answer is not to make the emergency vehicles slow down and stop.

This would be like banning lawful gun ownership because someone may have an accident with them or some dumbass does something stupid and shoots someone else.

Oh, wait, never mind.

It would be like modifying cops guns to have stupid heavy trigger pulls like the old double action revolvers they used to carry instead of training the officers to keep their finger off the trigger till they are ready to shoot.

Oh, wait, never mind.

Todays mini rant brought to you by the words "dumbass" and "oh, wait, never mind."

Having operated emergency vehicles, namely Fire Engines and Ambulances, since 1980, I can say with all authority that this has got to be one of the stupidest over reactions I have ever run across. Austin Fire is staffed with some of the most professional and safest operators out there and they have a very good program of training new operators so the idea that they have to limit them in their response to "protect the public" is just insane.

1 comment:

  1. oh, it's just the tip of the ice berg! this is austin. money must be saved for dog walks, bicycle fests and other frivolities. you can't imagine the things this city spends money on even while they reduce fire teams from four to three firefighters and place a moratorium on police pay raises! it is total insanity.