Fire Department Clean-up Investigated-City of Stockton Reports

(Stockton, CA) – The City of Stockton received calls from citizens in response to reports of
on-duty firefighters clearing weeds and debris surrounding a building at 19 Pilgrim Street
that is owned by Stockton Firefighters’ Union Local 456. Citizens observed multiple fire
department vehicles and firefighters, in uniform, at the site on Tuesday, July 13, 2010.
“We have investigated the incident, and the appropriate individuals will be held
accountable,” said Fire Chief Ron Hittle. “There appears to be no intentional misuse of
public funds, however, it shows poor judgment to use a building owned by the union for a
training exercise.”
Vacant buildings are often used for fire department training exercises. Some cleanup
of the surrounding area, clearing of overgrown vegetation and debris, is necessary to
prevent injury or damage and contamination of equipment. Site preparation at this
particular location exceeded minimum requirements.
New policies have been implemented to ensure this does not happen again.
“We recognize that this looks bad,” continued Hittle. “We want to assure the public
that we investigated the reports promptly and action has been taken.”

For additional information, please contact Ron Hittle, Fire Chief at (209) 937-8801

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