Skip to comments.No Pay, No Spray
Posted on 10/05/2010 2:32:07 PM PDT by Newton
Firefighters in rural Tennessee let a home burn to the ground last week because the homeowner hadn't paid a $75 fee.
Gene Cranick of Obion County and his family lost all of their possessions in the Sept. 29 fire, along with three dogs and a cat.
"They could have been saved if they had put water on it, but they didn't do it," Cranick told MSNBC's Keith Olbermann.
The fire started when the Cranicks' grandson was burning trash near the family home. As it grew out of control, the Cranicks called 911, but the fire department from the nearby city of South Fulton would not respond.
(Excerpt) Read more at msnbc.msn.com ...
Glen Beck made a very valid point.
The LOCAL gov’t decided that the only way they could pay for a Fire Department was to charge each Family $75 for Fire Department services. Think of this like an insurance policy.
Someone refused to pay the $75, and their house caught fire.
If the Fire Department had shown up and put the fire out - providing this service to someone who did not pay for the service; who would pay the $75 next year?
Life is hard, it’s harder if you are stupid.
if they shot at the firefighters would the police still come?
If anything, the conservative way would be to put out the fire and bill them later. The libby thing to do would be to either a) put it out and forget it; b) put it out and bill them $75 later, plus small fee; or c) if they're rich, let it burn.
If this turns out like the other threads on this, yer not gonna believe what some FReepers are gonna say.
What little sympathy I had (it was close to zero at the outset when this story broke and I exaimined the facts) for Gene Cranick was lost when he appeared in that self-pitying interview with Keith Olbermann. Not surprisingly, at no point did Olbermann address the crucial matter of personal responsibility.
These town members and firemen are acting like 5 year olds. You do not let a $200K home burn down over $75. Just think about it. Now the home is worthless so the county gets $2000 a year less in property taxes. The bank that owns the house could have payed out 30K in damages instead of $200K and now they are out $200K. If I was the bank, I would sue this county for gross negligence and incompetence.
One of the articles had the guy quoted as saying essentially “I knew about the $75 fee, and I chose not to pay it, but I figured they’d put out the fire anyway”.
I think this is because we have come to understand government as being outside the normal reality. Nobody would expect a gas station to allow you to fill up your tank even if you didn’t pay for the gas, or to deliver an order even if you bounce the check for the order, or to allow you to board the airplane even though you didn’t bring a ticket.
But when it comes to government, people just assume that they will service you even if you did not follow the rules.
In this case, the county the guy lives in doesn’t have a fire department. The CITY does, but didn’t handle fires outside the city. Someone decided it would be nice if they could get the city to cover the surrounding area, so the city kindly set up a program for any non-city-residents. All they have to do is sign up, pay their $75, and the city will use the city taxpayer resources to put out fires at their homes.
This particular homeowner did not do so. The only reason the fire department was there is their neighbor had paid, and was worried the idiot son’s out-of-control fire was going to catch HIS house too.
Sure, you’d like to think that if it just meant throwing a little water at the thing, they’d do it while they were set up to protect the neighbor’s house — since that would protect the neighbor’s house.
On the other hand, their department insurance policy might strictly deny coverage for any damages caused by fighting fires that are not in the city, except for those homes explicitly waiving their damage rights as part of joining the program.
Or maybe the tanker only has so much water and they can’t afford to use it for people who didn’t pay.
It’s too bad the homeowner didn’t join up for the program; and having not done so, did not properly protect his property from a fire his own son set, by having the hose ready to put out the fire if necessary.
And yes, government ala carte does mean that if you don’t choose it, you don’t get it. Just like if you tell the lady at the Golden Coral counter that you just want water, you can’t change your mind later and take your cup for a soda refill. You didn’t pay for it, and you will suffer.
No, that would be the communist thing. The county has a limited tax base, the country could not afford a Fire Department; so using Conservative principles, they created one and told everyone that cost of coverage was $75/family home. If you wanted Fire Department protection, this was the only way they could afford to provide it. Some people paid the $75, some took their chances.
How is it fair to those who paid the $75, if this sevice is given to someone who didn't pay? If they went to this guy's home - NO ONE would pay $75 the following year, because there would be no reason to pay it. What are the odds of your home catching fire? Why pay $75 now, if you can wait until you NEED a Fire Department and then pay?
This is EXACTLY like not paying for Medical Insurance, until you are diagnosed with Cancer. Then facing a $750,000 bill you go to your Medical Insurance provider and write a check for $500 and demand retro-active coverage. Sorry ...
Where’s PETA? The fire department should be charged with letting the pets die.
Did you read any articles about this? The firefighters were from the city, the guy didn’t LIVE In the city, paid no city taxes, and the city had no right or obligation to fight the fire in his yard.
The situation in Tennessee sounds pretty whacked.
If someone doesn't have medical insurance, you don't kick them to the curb. You treat them and bill them, and then sell their house if you have to to recover your expenses.
Which is hard to do if you let it burn to the ground.
You most certainly DO!!
The Fire Department can not be supported by the country tax base. If they serve this person - who paid nothing ... then who do you think is going to write a $75 check next year?
If you paid $75 this year, to support the Fire Department, and your neighbor got the service for free - would you pay $75 next year? Is there any reason why ANYONE would pay $75 next year? Thus, the entire Fire Department would go bankrupt and no one would have fire protection.
If people don’t pay and their house is on fire, the firefighters should put the fire out and bill the owner for the actual cost of dousing the fire—which would be much more than $75. So, people would have the benefit of protection and the choice of paying a huge amount for the coverage or not.
Their failure to do so caused the neighbor to suffer damage to his house, which is the exact thing that he was paying these guys to prevent. Sorry, but that clearly puts them in the wrong.
Yes, and yes. Because after-the-fact, the FD is going to charge me a lot more than $75.