Monday, September 19, 2011

I don't trust reporters.

I have very little use for the local news. I avoid it because all they report on is depressing stuff that I don't need to hear about and half the time in their haste to get the news on the air first it is not always accurate. I understand they have a job to do but at the same time when working a call they are like vultures and just plain made my job hard.

This is an example of such a case. We get dispatched to an apartment fire. This was a fully involved fire that gutted several apartments and we had several units on scene. Thankfully no one was hurt except for a cat with some smoke inhalation. We arrived just as the main fire was out and they were putting out the hot spots. We entered the courtyard of the apartment and were directed to the family members of the main apartment that was involved. The mother was nowhere to be found and there was several children in a range of ages. We worked with the children and police while figuring out what happened. About 45 min. later the mother was found. During this time we found out that half of the tenants of the building were family members of the kids. We conferred with the police and decided not to call child protective services.

After a while we recognized several reporters nosing around the crowd and told the family members that they have the right not to talk to the reporters and advised them not to. We can't tell them not to, and wish they didn't for fire investigation purposes, but can't. One of those reporters asked me to talk to them and when I asked them for permission they said no. The reporter was miffed and walked away.

The fire investigator showed up so I went over and started explaining who was who and where they were. When I pointed to where the family of the main apartment was I saw that same reporter was talking with the mother and her kids despite my telling him that they said no to talking to him. Oh crap. Nothing we can do about it now. We gently pull her away as nicely as we could and finished the work that we needed to do.

We finished that call and were sent to several more before we made it back to the station. When we got there we had a message to call headquarters. Oh crap. That doesn't sound good. What have we done wrong. We both go to the office and find out it is from the fire. We are questioned as to why we didn't call child protective services. We explained our decision and that police agreed with us. They explained what the news had been reporting and just wanted to cover the bases (their asses). We had caught some flack because what actually happened and what was reported on TV was totally different.

That is why I don't trust reporters.

1 comment:

  1. Life is real, the stories about life are so twisted. Distortion of the truth is such a waste. K