Union chief: Cameras in fire trucks interfere with emergencies - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Union chief: Cameras in fire trucks interfere with emergencies

Posted: Updated:
ATLANTA -

A fire official says a video recording system mounted inside Atlanta fire trucks is already having a negative effect.

City Hall ordered the cameras, which monitor how employees drive.

The president of the Atlanta Firefighters Union, Sgt. Stephen Borders, said that the recording device interfered with a crew trying to answer an entrapment call on Saturday night.

Borders said that the flashing LED red light was a distraction for firefighters. That incident was handled safely, but Borders said critical seconds could have been lost.

The union boss told Atlanta City Council members on Monday that he had been assured by city officials that the camera program was going to be placed on hold for review. However, he said that fire chief was doing the opposite and moving forward with the program.

City officials said the cameras were installed to try to cut back on accidents. Borders said that firefighters have the safest driving records among public safety officials.

Janet Ward, the public relations manager of the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department, issued a statement saying, "From the point of view of the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department, the Drive Cams are about one thing, and that is the safety of our firefighters. Accidents while responding to or returning from incidents claim the lives of firefighters every year.  And statistics compiled by the National Fire Protection Association do not support the idea that buckling a seatbelt or stopping for a red light poses a threat to response times. The terrible events in Houston recently remind us that our firefighters face enormous dangers every day. If we can minimize those dangers, we are determined to do so.

"Stopping at red lights and stop signs assures our safe arrival without risking the lives of motorists, pedestrians and firefighters.  The penalty for first offense violations of seatbelts and traffic signals ranges from a letter of counseling to a letter of reprimand.  These penalties pale in comparison to the cost of debilitating injuries or fatalities to citizens and firefighters caused by non-compliance."

  • More Local NewsMore>>

  • Suspected DUI driver strikes officer's car

    Suspected DUI driver strikes officer's car

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 6:19 AM EDT2014-08-20 10:19:40 GMT
    An Atlanta Police officer was hurt after his squad car got rear ended by a suspected drunk driver.  The officer, who is a member of the department's HEAT DUI unit, was working a traffic stop
    An Atlanta Police officer was hurt after his squad car was struck by a suspected drunk driver.
  • Police: domestic fight leads to SWAT standoff

    Police: domestic fight leads to SWAT standoff

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 6:09 AM EDT2014-08-20 10:09:44 GMT
    Police in Cobb County say a man barricaded himself inside a home early Wednesday, forcing a SWAT unit to respond. It happened at home on Spring Mountain Lane and Lost Mountain Road.
    Police in Cobb County say a man barricaded himself inside a home early Wednesday, forcing a SWAT unit to respond. It happened at home on Spring Mountain Lane and Lost Mountain Road.
  • Unauthorized traffic stops in Greene County

    Unauthorized traffic stops in Greene County

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 11:13 PM EDT2014-08-20 03:13:42 GMT
    A county manager is accused of making unauthorized traffic stops in Greene County.
    A county manager is accused of making unauthorized traffic stops in Greene County.
Powered by WorldNow

KRIV FOX 26
4261 Southwest Freeway
Houston, TX 77027

Phone: (713) 479-2801
Fax: (713) 479-2859

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