Houston Chief: Lack of fire department investment puts citizens, firefighters at risk

  • Source: Houston Chronicle
  • Published: 10/10/2017 12:00 AM

Houston Fire Chief Sam Pena gave City Council a bleak assessment Tuesday of his department's readiness to respond to significant rainstorms and even to daily fire and medical calls, saying a ramshackle fleet and inadequate training are putting the safety of both citizens and firefighters at risk. The Houston Fire Department must double its annual spending on engines, ladders and ambulances, the chief said, and must ramp up its purchases of water rescue apparatus and the training to enable personnel to operate them. The department has a “moral and legal” duty, Pena said, to provide safe and effective apparatus to its 4,100 firefighters and the citizens they serve.


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