All but three members of a Texas fire department have walked out following the dismissal of their chief, leaving a community in crisis.
The firefighters, members of Preston Fire Rescue, were members of an all-volunteer force. Despite this, a loss of manpower is a serious moment for the Preston Peninsula community.
In total, six firefighters walked last Friday after the local board of directors terminated Chief Chase Stanford.
“He had no prior disciplinary history that we were aware of, nothing we could find on the records, and he’d been nothing but a good fire chief,” now-ex firefighter Christian Collins told K10.
Collins believes the dismissal -which was originally cited as being due to “misappropriation of funds”- is more likely related to the cost of training.
The Preston Volunteer Emergency Services board of directors would not answer K10’s request for comment.
The PVES have gone through six chiefs in five or six years.
“We have an estimated 1.7 million visitors per year just to the marinas,” Collins said. “We have Tanglewood resort, and all of that is covered by volunteers, who a majority of the time -Monday through Friday- are unavailable. We all have other jobs.”
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