Town Square

Is fire district carrying fight too far?

Original post made by Renee Batti, associate editor of The Almanac, on Mar 20, 2007

<I>The following letter by Brian Schar was published in the Almanac's March 21 print edition:</I>

This story contains 168 words.

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Posted by Sparky
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Mar 23, 2007 at 1:55 pm

I couldn't agree more that our firefighters should be properly trained and equipped. When it comes time to turn on the siren and rush to a blaze, we want a fire department that knows what thy are doing. It's obvious the fire department is doing the right thing in working to PREVENT fires. I would welcome fire inspectors into my home or business at any time to help prevent a fire from happening. Unless someone has something to hide, I don't know who wouldn't welcome an inspection. It certainly can't be as intrusive as a blaze. Here's a question to consider: Should the fire department determine whether the hydrant nearest your home has sufficient pressure and is within a proper distance to properly squelch a fire; and that your street and driveway provide enough access for a fire engine? Or, are you satisfied that the Thereon Building Department provided adequate review and approval during the time when it was run by Mike Hood, the official who suddenly retired and quickly moved away shortly before questions began circulating full speed? Maybe we're all making too much of this. After all, we could just sit around and wait for a big honking house to burn to the ground. Who cares if there's a chance the fire hydrants sized for a 1948 home couldn't provide enough water for a new home three times larger. What are the odds my kid could be at a sleep over birthday party at the house and be in the converted basement media room without any exits when the fire hits. Just because Atherton has a history of city management fiascos isn't any reason to worry. Just because Miike Hood had a boss -- City Manager Jim Robinson -- who didn't seem to notice anything wrong or do anything doesn't really alarm me. I'm sure it was just routine that Robinson clammed up and circled the wagons with the lawyer as things heated up last year. And that grand jury, well, they're just an outside third party that brought this to our attention. Maybe that nice Mayor Carlson will write another article for the Almanac. He's so reassuring and he's a fancy lawyer, he must know more about these things than the people down at the fire station. He knows about construction, too. He had a brand spanking new home built for his family in Atherton, back in......when that helpful Mr. Hood ran the building department. His house hasn't burned down, so all this hubbub about inspections shouldn't worry anybody.

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Posted by RoverII
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Mar 23, 2007 at 5:14 pm

Sparky couldn't be more accurate in sizing up some of the town's thinking, unfortunately, in my opinion.