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Bronx, NY - 'Cop' Car Blocks Hydrant At Ongoing Fire

Published on: August 24, 2009 09:26 AM
By:  NY Post
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Bronx, NY -  A car sporting an official NYPD placard issued to cops blatantly blocked a fire hydrant yesterday in The Bronx—as a blaze broke out in the apartment building directly in front of it.

Instead of being able to hook up their hoses to the hydrant, frustrated firefighters had to rely on handheld fire extinguishers to put out the kitchen blaze that broke out on the top floor of a six-story building at 206 East 198th Street in Fordham.

About 60 firefighters arrived at 11:46 a.m. and had the blaze out around noon, fire officials said.

Four young children were taken to a local hospital and treated for smoke inhalation.

Richard Blatus, an acting FDNY deputy chief, said it was unclear whether the 1998 White Volvo blocking the hydrant belonged to a cop. But another fire official at the scene told The Post it was an unmarked police vehicle.

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The vehicle displayed parking credentials for Queens’ narcotics bureau.

A Post photographer trying to take a picture of the placard was forced to move away by cops.

They ticketed the car, which was then towed. But hours later, a man who answered the phone at the pound said the car was moved to the 52nd Precinct.

Residents in the building were furious.

“Why would you leave your car where people need to get water in case of an emergency?” said Dorothy Lemon.

“If it was an off-duty cop, he should have known better,” said a tenant who gave only his first name, James.


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Read Comments (22)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Aug 24, 2009 at 08:30 AM Anonymous Says:

if it had been any other parked car blocking the hydrant, the firemen would have simply smashed the windows and routed their hoses through it.
Instead, they risked their own lives and the civilian property "that much more". For no good reason whatsoever.

2

 Aug 24, 2009 at 09:08 AM The Truth Says:

I hope the driver of the car is charged, has his placard taken away and then removed from his position.
In reality he will probably get a promotion...

3

 Aug 24, 2009 at 09:08 AM Anonymous Says:

so typical

4

 Aug 24, 2009 at 09:02 AM joe shmoe Says:

where are all our buffs? let's hear it loud and clear "i have a parking permit" "the cops should be allowed to do whatever they want cause I have protekzia by the federalies". fact: cops create nice hazards to public well being (jumping red lights not on way to emergency, blocking fire hydrants, etc. just look vicinity of precint for example, could find many other places too.) don't fight no crime at all, just create traffic when HAVING TO PULL SOMEONE OVER IN MIDDLE OF STREET. blocking traffic to give meter parking ticket. etc. there was just a report that I think was fox news, tried calling local precints and there was nobody to answer any phone. finishing note, GOOD FOR NOTHINGS!

5

 Aug 24, 2009 at 08:43 AM AuthenticSatmar Says:

The fire dept is looking to make a story out of nothing. Stove fires are never put out using hoses, and they always use extinguishers for that. Had they really needed to hook up hoses, if you look at the picture you'll see that while it may be tight, there is more than enough room.
That said, there is no excuse to block a hydrant.
It is time that FDNY starts a community outreach program similar to community policing. The fire fighters are the most obnoxious public servants, with feelings of grandeur and disrespect. They need to learn how to deal with the public, and receive training like the PD has.

6

 Aug 24, 2009 at 08:42 AM Anonymous Says:

I don't get it, and I never have. Why does a car parked in front of a hydrant prevent the firemen from hooking up their hoses? So they have to go around, over or through a car. Big deal.

7

 Aug 24, 2009 at 09:28 AM Anonymous Says:

And. Bloomberg says nothing! Election time now!

8

 Aug 24, 2009 at 09:25 AM mendel Says:

there is no reason not to park at a fire hydrant its just a money making scheme by the city

9

 Aug 24, 2009 at 09:35 AM Anonymous Says:

Perhaps the cop was on an emergency mission for Bloomberg.....writing tickets.

10

 Aug 24, 2009 at 10:27 AM Anonymous Says:

For all of you ignorant people that don't understand why you can't park in front of a hydrant here are the two reasons.
1. If there is a car in front and the engine is coming down the block looking for the hydrant he probably will not see it.
2. The great comment about going through the car or around it is coming from people that have never tried to hook up a hydrant or move the solid large diameter hose. It is very heavy and cumbersome even for in shape fireman. The theory of going through the cars windows is a myth from the movies and staged photo shoots since almost all cars are too tall to have the windows level with a hydrants spuds. Once the hydrant is charged you still need 2-3 feet for the hose to charge before it can be bent so just because you see some space does not mean that the hydrant is serviceable.
For the expert that wrote that stove fires do not require a line you are correct only most of the time but many times there is extension to the cabinets and walls so an attack line should be used.
Just a word of advice don't block a hydrant since it is probably not the firefighters house that you are endangering but rather your own, and when it snows dig it out for the same reason.

11

 Aug 24, 2009 at 10:19 AM listen up Says:

Reply to #6  
Anonymous Says:

I don't get it, and I never have. Why does a car parked in front of a hydrant prevent the firemen from hooking up their hoses? So they have to go around, over or through a car. Big deal.

the type and size of hoses used are not flexible enough to go around cars at such angles. When pumping water, they become very regid and taught, therefore a straight line from the hydrant is needed

12

 Aug 24, 2009 at 11:12 AM Anonymous Says:

The issue is simple: Are police above the law or subject to it? It is understandable that their responses to emergencies suspend some limitations of the law. But this situation portrays the dangers of doing so in non-emergency situations. I viewed police cars (marked cars) parking in front of hydrants or in bus stops so that the officers could go into a restaurant to eat lunch. I am sure they need to eat, but if these spaces are illegal for parking, they should be no different.

13

 Aug 24, 2009 at 11:22 AM Dr. Z Says:

Let's be frank. Many members of our community double park, use spots for the handicapped, and some even park close to or in front of a fire hydrant.

Those of us who block a fire hydrant are endangering lives. It's irresponsible and reckless. Those who do it often don't care about what we say here, because they live selfish lives. Some of us do something wrong impulsively, to save a few minutes' time.

There are the volunteer firemen and volunteer ambulance corps members who use their lights and sirens to get through traffic when there is no urgent matter.

All of this is being recorded, videotaped, and monitored. The fines will be meted out in less than a month, on Rosh HaShanah.

14

 Aug 24, 2009 at 12:35 PM Anonymous Says:

I once watched the engine pull up near a fire, the truck fits exactly in the space that you,re not allowed to park in. he pulled in just enough so he wasnt blocking other emergency vehicles responding o the fire. There is no excuse for blocking a pump, even just a few inches. The life or property you are risking could be yours c"v.

15

 Aug 24, 2009 at 12:31 PM Boruch Says:

NYS Vehicle and Traffic Law says that you could park at a fire hydrant if the vehicle is attended by a licensed operator who can move such vehicle in case of emergency. See NYS VTL section 1202, subdivision 2e.

16

 Aug 24, 2009 at 12:56 PM A. Nuran Says:

It doesn't matter if the guy carries tin and wears blue polyester to work. He broke the law and endangered innocent lives by his actions. He should face criminal charges. At the very least he is liable for the damage caused by his obstruction of the Fire Department. Let's hope he has enough insurance and personal assets to pay his victims.

17

 Aug 24, 2009 at 01:38 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #16  
A. Nuran Says:

It doesn't matter if the guy carries tin and wears blue polyester to work. He broke the law and endangered innocent lives by his actions. He should face criminal charges. At the very least he is liable for the damage caused by his obstruction of the Fire Department. Let's hope he has enough insurance and personal assets to pay his victims.

What are you talking about? Read the article again where it says the fire was put out with extinguishers and they don't even need an attack line. The person of the car should get a ticket like everyone else but to call for "criminal charges" is ridiculous.

18

 Aug 24, 2009 at 01:13 PM Anonymous Says:

Cops don't care about the law or other's time/money/feelings.
They just double park, park at hydrants, jump red lights w/o flashing lights (which makes it even more dangerous) for no good reason.
I'm passing the 66th pct almost every day & the traffic there is terrible sometimes because a cop went into the precinct & didn't care to double park his car at least near the parked cars & not in the middle of the street
I know its not an excuse to park illegal but as the law enforcers we expect them to care more about the law & not endanger others

19

 Aug 24, 2009 at 05:05 PM Bill at the 66 Says:

GIVE ME A BREAK!!! What r u all jealous because Kelly took all your parking permits away?? ha ha ha haha ha no one abused the system like the 66/71 residents and you all know it. Get over it, I know we did in the 66 pct. We love that your powerless now

20

 Aug 24, 2009 at 11:04 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #6  
Anonymous Says:

I don't get it, and I never have. Why does a car parked in front of a hydrant prevent the firemen from hooking up their hoses? So they have to go around, over or through a car. Big deal.

The hose can't be bent 90 degrees at the union. There must be space near hydrant for aiming purposes. Additionally, firemen need room to hook up the hose and maneuver the wrench.

21

 Aug 25, 2009 at 01:45 PM Anonymous Says:

Why did they not just tow the car? Get an emergency NYPD tow truck - or ram the car?

22

 Sep 05, 2009 at 07:24 PM Concerned Citizen Says:

ATTENTION!!! It is 8:15 pm, Saturday evening of the long Labor Day weekend. After 2 calls and four hours, I finally managed to get the 50th Precinct to ticket a BMW parked in front of 4660 Manhattan College Parkway (Bronx) about six feet from the hydrant. There is a Central Park Precinct police placard on the dashboard. I called a tow truck to remove the car. The minute the dispatcher heard that there was a police placard involved, he refused the call and said no one else would touch it either, for fear of reprisals from the NYPD. What is wrong with this picture?!?!?!?! Can someone out there help me locate the direct phone number of Engine 52/Ladder 52 to see if perhaps they can do something about this situation?!?!?!?! Thanks for any help you can offer. P.S. The owner of this vehicle also has an expired registration on the windshield! And is probably enjoying his long holiday courtesy of the free parking space by the hydrant.

23

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