A damp squeegee: from strange firefighting operations

A damp squeegee: from strange firefighting operations

The kitzingen fire department is called out between 180 and 200 times a year. Most of the time, it’s accidents to which the volunteers are called – and, of course, fires. However, there are also missions that are simply unnecessary, not only from the point of view of the firefighters, as markus ungerer, the commander of the kitzingen fire department, reported. "Some people really think we’re girls for everything," says ungerer.

Some examples from the mission diary. Wednesday 15. May 2013. Call to the fire department. After rainfall, a woman reports water in the basement. The volunteers are taken away from the workplace and set off in two emergency vehicles. On arrival then the surprise. Just one centimeter of water covers the floor. Not a case for the fire department, more a case for rags and buckets, says ungerer. "Wiping out damp is not part of our job".

"Some people really think we are girls for everything"." Commander markus ungerer on unnecessary calls

"Water in the cellar" was also a sounding of another alarm, which happened some time ago. When they arrive, a lady is already cleaning up the mess with a bucket and rag. The professionals first decided to help her. "I was still a group leader at the time," recalls ungerer. "Suddenly i heard noises through a door that reminded me of a soccer game. When I open the door, I find father and son sitting in front of a television set – watching football."He felt sorry for the woman in the house, says the firefighter. But in this case, he had deducted his manner.

There was a series of three unnecessary alarms this year in the middle of june. Due to the long-lasting heat, leaves, wood, paper and other waste was totally dry in the gullies in the city. Probably discarded cigarette butts set the waste on fire. Three times in four days, the beepers called the firefighters to "kanalbranden" (sewer fires). Most of them were already extinguished by the time of their arrival. "If the residents had simply dumped a bucket of water over it instead of calling the fire department, the matter would have been settled," says the commander.

Time and again, animal lovers are also responsible for the misuse of firefighting equipment. Often, supposedly injured animals are already up and gone by the time the emergency services arrive. Or it happens like 14 days ago. "Animal rescue, at the church square," was the call to action. On arrival the helpers find two pigeons fallen from the nest. "We did what anyone else could have done: brought the birds to the animal shelter."

He is annoyed by the behavior of some people who expect that if the worst comes to the worst, someone will come to solve even the smallest problem for them. "They don’t think about the fact that my men have to leave the workplace, that such operations are not well understood by employers, and that there are costs for the general public," says the commander.

Ungerer has experienced such a behavior only a few days ago again. In front of the traffic circle in the kitzingen settlement, the wind had blown over a traffic sign from a construction site. "Car drivers stopped, curved around the sign, some reached for their cell phones," ungerer describes his observations. "I stopped for a moment, got out, put the sign back up and the problem was solved."

But there are also other memories. One of them goes back to this year’s floods. "After we had already worked a few calls, we looked around to see where else we were needed," says the firefighter. In a cellar in sthashausen, for example, the helpers encountered an old woman who was fighting the water all by herself without even thinking to call the fire department. "We were happy to lend a hand," says markus ungerer.

Under the heading of curiosities, a call to the fire department from a burgher who, at the beginning of the summer, asked if the fire department could come to his garden and fill up his swimming pool can be recorded. "We asked him if his pool was on fire. He quickly hung up the phone again."

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