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According to Yahoo News, a House in Obion County Tennessee burnt down on Tuesday, and when firefighters were asked to respond, they refused the emergency. Apparently the man’s house was outside the South Fulton department’s city limits, and therefore in order to receive the fire department’s services, residents were required to pay a 75 dollar annual fee. Gene Cranick, the victim of the fire, had not paid the annual fee, so when his house fire went beyond his control and he called 911 for help, he was refused of any services. His neighbors, however, had paid the annual fee and were afraid that their house might be in danger, so they called the fire department, who did not hesitate to come. Cranick’s house was now burning down, with firefighters standing and watching. Even though the men were there, with the supplies ready at hand to save his home and all of its contents, they instead stood and watched because he had not paid his 75 dollar fee. Cranick told the firemen he would pay them their fee to stop the fire, and they still refused, and stood by and watched the fire consume his home.

What!?! The first thought in my head; why was there a fee? I understand that they are out of city limits, and therefore it is not the fire departments responsibility to respond to their house, but what the heck happened to good will? And since when did we have to pay for safety? If the fire department was not responding to anything else, what was so hard about it to go and save a man’s home? The home insurance is going to pay for them to have come no matter what. Also, when you are admitted to an emergency room, you are first taken care of so that they know you will survive, then they ask for your insurance and a co-pay. So why when the fire department was called, did they first look up a list of who has and hasn’t paid, then decide to respond? They should have immediately responded, got the fire under control, then dealt with any fees. The poor man offered to pay them the fee and they still refused to save his home. This means nothing other than they were trying to make an example out of this man. Not only was the fire department there, but they had their hoses in hand, just waiting for the fire to get too close to the neighbor’s house. This is ridiculous, you do not let a man’s home burn down while you watch. What if there would have been a person inside the home? Would they have refused to save her?  What if the fire hit a gas leak? What if trees would have caught fire? It is purely dangerous and ignorant to just let a house fire go, but “Sorry, didn’t pay yer fee”. This story makes me sick.

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