Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

New Responsibilities for Fire Chief Questioned

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

New Responsibilities for Fire Chief Questioned

Article excerpt

Police officers at fire scenes will now have to check in with Crafton's fire chief before leaving, a change that some local officials, including, to some extent, the fire chief himself, consider restrictive, unnecessary and a potential liability concern.

Council President Mike Crown doesn't share in these sentiments and supports the updated definition of the fire chief's powers.

"The ordinance is no different than the practice that goes on now. It gives police powers at the scene of a fire and further defines what exists now," Crown said.

But Councilman Ed Stewart termed the provision that makes the fire chief the "supreme commander" a waste of paperwork. He argued unsuccessfully for a reconsideration of this and other changes that were part of the revised borough code approved Feb. 25.

When his new powers were brought to his attention by Councilman Tom Byers, even fire Chief Roy Hermes seemed surprised and said, "I'm a low-key guy and I don't care for the new ordinance. …

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