Two city councilmen raised concerns Tuesday about the effects mandated fire patrols are having on equipment and firefighters and urged Mayor Tony George to reconsider the idea.
The fire watches involve firefighters driving the engines and aerial ladder truck throughout the city and parking them in highly visible locations as a way to prevent fires, according to the mayor.
But Councilman Bill Barrett pointed out there have been mechanical problems with some of the vehicles that are 12 to 15 years old.
“I think we need to make sure that we are maintaining this equipment … and I don’t think that that’s the best use of that type of equipment, let alone the firefighters that are operating this equipment,” Barrett said.
He noted he wanted to go on record with his comments anticipating council will be asked to approve the purchase of new equipment due to wear and tear caused by the watches.