Friday, June 26, 2009

Heat, a Fire Hydrant, and Pepper Spray

An unruly mob decided it was not going to let firefighters do their job.

From the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

Milwaukee Police Department officers used pepper spray near a crowd Thursday afternoon so firefighters could close off a hydrant the people had opened, a Fire Department official said.

Milwaukee Fire Department Lt. Ed Schott said the incident happened around 2 p.m. at N. 13th St. and W. Cottage Place. A crowd of about 50 residents had been throwing water at the firefighters. The pepper spray was used in the direction of the people but didn't appear to get on any of them, Schott said.

"They (the residents) got angry and I can empathize with them," Schott said. "The kids were having a great time in the water and it was hot as Hades."

Schott said the residents scooped water into plastic buckets and threw it on the firefighters.

"We were kind of hot anyway in all our gear," he said.

Though many residents have devised ways to open fire hydrants and turn them into sprinklers, officials say the diversion of water reduces the pressure available for use in the area in the event of a fire.

The people who got angry because the firefighters and police were trying to close off the hydrant would probably also be pointing fingers at those same authorities if a fire had been unable to be put out quickly because of lack of water pressure.

Pepper spray?

Obviously, this situation was really out of control.

When the adults act like thugs, is it any surprise that the kids do?

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