DC firefighters reportedly fill private outdoor pool after storm - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

DC firefighters reportedly fill private outdoor pool on day after severe storm

Posted: Updated:
  • Weather NewsWeather NewsMore>>

  • Check power outages in DC region

    Check power outages in DC region

    Here are some valuable links to check the power outages in the D.C. region.
    Here are some valuable links to check the power outages in the D.C. region.
  • Images capture waterspout in Oldsmar

    Images capture waterspout in Oldsmar

    Tuesday, July 9 2013 3:50 PM EDT2013-07-09 19:50:55 GMT
    Mother Nature put on quite a show in Pinellas County Monday night: a waterspout formed near Oldsmar, and many people caught it on camera. Check out photos and video here.
    Mother Nature put on quite a show in Pinellas County Monday night: a waterspout formed near Oldsmar, and many people caught it on camera. Check out photos and video here.
  • Md. apartments condemned weeks after 'derecho'

    Md. apartments condemned weeks after 'derecho'

    Wednesday, June 12 2013 2:52 PM EDT2013-06-12 18:52:00 GMT
    Nearly two weeks after the derecho storm that knocked power out for about half the households in the Washington, D.C. area, an apartment building was condemned as uninhabitable.
    Nearly two weeks after the derecho storm that knocked power out for about half the households in the Washington, D.C. area, an apartment building was condemned as uninhabitable.
WASHINGTON -

There are questions surrounding the actions of some D.C. firefighters in wake of the storm. Someone ordered an engine company out of service on Saturday and told them to fill up a private pool in Northeast D.C.

Now, the D.C. Firefighters Union wants to know who issued that order.

Less than 24 hours after the storm roared through the city leaving ten of thousands without power, someone at the highest level of the fire department ordered Engine 30 out of service and told the sergeant in command to go to a home on 55th Street and fill its above-ground pool.

A man who lives across the alley from the yard with the pool says he watched from his porch as the firefighters pulled out the hose and filled the pool.

"I thought it was mighty strange but I have never seen that done before, you know, that a fire truck would come and fill you tank up for you," says David Edwards.

A person who answered the phone at the home declined to comment and hung up.

The water is free to the fire department if it's drawn from a hydrant, but homeowners have to pay for it.

Another neighbor told us she would never ask the city to fill up her pool even if she had one.

"We have ports on the side of our homes where we can attach a water hose to it and fill it up ourselves," says Vonnie Brawner. "But no, I wouldn't, and I think the fire department should put the priorities in order."

Ed Smith, President of the D.C. Firefighters Union, says he is astounded anyone would have ordered a private pool to be filled unless there was an actual emergency.

When asked if it was improper, Smith responded, "Yeah, I would say so. It's highly unusual on a normal day, much less given a state of emergency as in Saturday, one day after the storm."

Smith says he would like to know who ordered the pool to be filled and why.

"We as firefighters believe in being out in the community and participating as much as possible," he says. "We cannot lose sight of our core mission, and our core mission is to respond to emergencies, whether it's medical, fire, terrorism. We need to be in service for our core mission as much as possible."

Smith estimates the engine was out of service for at least a half an hour filling the pool and then heading to a hydrant for a refill of its own.

A spokesperson for DC Water estimates it costs about $10 to fill up a pool of that size.

We asked D.C. Fire and EMS Chief Kenneth Ellerbe for a comment, but he would neither confirm nor deny that this took place. He did issue a statement that doesn't address the filling of the pool.

In that statement, Chief Ellerbe says regarding inquiries on our storm-related activities during this past weekend:

"We feel that the real storm-related story is the fact that Fire and EMS responded to more than 1,550 calls during and after Friday's storm. The department was staffed at 100% and our firefighters worked tirelessly through adverse weather and heat conditions."


  • FOX 5 Weather AppMore>>

  • FOX 5 Weather App

    FOX 5 Weather App

    Weather App

    We know you have busy schedules and can't always get to a TV, so when you need weather information - and you need it immediately - there's only one place you need to click when you are on the go, the FOX 5 Weather App!!
    We know you have busy schedules and can't always get to a TV, so when you need weather information - and you need it immediately - there's only one place you need to click when you are on the go, the FOX 5 Weather App!!
Powered by WorldNow
Untitled

WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
5151 Wisconsin Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20016
Main Number: (202) 244-5151
Newsroom: (202) 895-3000
fox5tips@wttg.com

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices