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  1. #1
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    Default Cat "Rescue" from an electric pole--why are we doing this?

    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...Id=45&id=53795

    Seriously....I don't care how careful they were. Without positively cutting the power, the risk isn't worth it. And even then--it's a cat, and cats climb poles. ALL OF THE TIME!

    I wouldn't want to have the conversation with the Chief or family members, trying to explain how someone got killed or critically injured for Snowball the Cat.

    Sheesh.

    Please...someone explain to me how this was justified.
    Bryan Beall
    Silver City, Oklahoma USA

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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverCity4 View Post
    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...Id=45&id=53795

    Seriously....I don't care how careful they were. Without positively cutting the power, the risk isn't worth it. And even then--it's a cat, and cats climb poles. ALL OF THE TIME!

    I wouldn't want to have the conversation with the Chief or family members, trying to explain how someone got killed or critically injured for Snowball the Cat.

    Sheesh.

    Please...someone explain to me how this was justified.
    Hi Bryan, welcome back! Long time no see.

    Animal Rescue is something we do from time to time. But, having said that, we do not take undue risk, a careful evaluation is made PRIOR to starting any action. In this case, a plan of action was worked out, AFTER a long and close look to make absolutely sure that this was TV Cable equipment, and that live power lines were a safe distance away.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverCity4 View Post
    Please...someone explain to me how this was justified.
    Sometimes the justification isn't obvious but consider what would have happened if the FD didn't take the time to perform a well planned rescue. How long would it be before someone from the neighborhood tried it with the old painter's ladder from behind the garage?

    Sometimes animal rescues aren't just for the benefit of the animal but for the benefit of mitigating a situation that could easily get a well meaning civilian injured or killed.

    (And they're also some of the best PR you can get as this story so clearly illustrates. )
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    FYI

    A cat scratch can cause a rabies exposure. When a rabid feline licks its front paws it puts the virus on its claws. Regardless if the claws are wet or dry the virus can be transmitted.
    I believe them bones are me. Some say we are born into the grave. I feel so alone, gonna end up a big ol' pile a them bones

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    Quote Originally Posted by FDAIC485 View Post
    FYI

    A cat scratch can cause a rabies exposure. When a rabid feline licks its front paws it puts the virus on its claws. Regardless if the claws are wet or dry the virus can be transmitted.
    For some reason your post is making me laugh! I also agree with DeputyMarshal

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    I've been involved in one cat-in-a-tree incident. I learned from that incident that the cat does not WANT to be rescued and will attempt to kill anyone coming near it. So as far as I'm concerned, it can come down on it's own when it's ready. I'd perfectly content with it never coming down as well.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FDAIC485 View Post
    A cat scratch can cause a rabies exposure. When a rabid feline licks its front paws it puts the virus on its claws. Regardless if the claws are wet or dry the virus can be transmitted.
    As with anything, PPE is something that must be considered. With animal rescues, I highly suggest that coat, gloves and some sort of eye protection be included in the required minimum.

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    Why did they do it? Because if the phone company came by with a truck and plucked the little bugger off the catv amp, the firemen would look like a bunch of scaredy-cats. He's sitting on catv, guys attatch and detatch drops on that all day. The black box underneath that is telephone, the big loop to the left is fiber optic. You could eat your lunch there without being in danger.

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    Hi Bryan, welcome back! Long time no see.
    Not around as much as I used to be, but I still look around from time to time.

    Back to the subject at hand...

    The way the article reads, the cat was about to get cooked at any time, which leads me to believe that the power lines were pretty close. If they weren't, then the risk part is considerably lower.

    I understand the PR aspect, but that alone doesn't justify it for me. I've always had a bit of a problem with getting a cat out of a tree (or whatever). If a person parachutes out of an airplane and gets caught in a tree, he's probably not going to intentionally get back in the tree---ever.

    And yes, PO'd cats are extremely unpleasant to deal with!
    Bryan Beall
    Silver City, Oklahoma USA

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    True story regarding one of our family cats. My wife calls me at the fire station (which is 90 miles from where I live) and says the cat is on top of the power pole across the street how do we get it down. I say you don't, it will come down when it is ready to. She says he has been up there all morning and the boys are worried. I said ever seen a cat skeleton on top of a power pole? She said no, but the boys are very worried and want to go get it. I said if you can't wait for it to come down call the power compnay. She said the fire department won't do it? I said 17000 volts says no we won't. She reluctantly says okay and we hang up.

    The next day I pull in the driveway at home and there is 3 twelve foot 2 by 4's nailed end to end and I think to myself WTF? I ask my kids what's up with that? They were going to try and nudge the cat to get it to come down. Let me tell you what...I left the fear of God in them so hard that I am sure they never would have that thought again.

    Moral of the story? People simply don't know any better and will do stupid things to save their pets. If I am called as a firefighter to make such a rescue I will call for the police and the power company. I am not going to put my guys at risk for an animal. My guys are worth far more than anyone's pet. If that offends anyone my advice is get over it.

    By the way I am an animal lover my family has cats, dogs, a Guinea Pig and even a solitary goldfish. But no animal ever is worth the life of a firefighter.

    FyredUp

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    because the electric is on the top of the pole not even near the cat
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    I agree with some of you, logical thinking needs to be used by us, so that the public doesn't kill themselves. Like when we get a power pole on fire. What the F)(*& are we going to do???? Keep the idiots away from the line until the power company shows up... they go up and use their extinguisher and put it out, we leave.... Why, because we can get there quicker than they can ...(most of the time)

    But I hate cats ever since my sister had one.... it would attack you and scratch the hell out of your legs.... F*%@#ing Cats

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    I a definately agree that there was little to no danger in this rescue from electricity. The ****ed off cat was probably more likely to harm them than the electricity. The power lines are probably a good 6ft above the level with the cat.

    However, I still think this should have been a utility company rescue supervised by the fire dept. As far as i'm concerned, we don't do anything to anything on a utility pole. I'd be happy to stand by while someone else does it.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dday05 View Post
    For some reason your post is making me laugh! I also agree with DeputyMarshal
    You mean, let me understand this cause, ya know maybe it's me, I'm a little messed up maybe, but I'm funny how, I mean funny like I'm a clown, I amuse you? I make you laugh, I'm here to ****in' amuse you? What do you mean funny, funny how? How am I funny?

    That's the goal! To be entertaining yet informative.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDAIC485 View Post
    You mean, let me understand this cause, ya know maybe it's me, I'm a little messed up maybe, but I'm funny how, I mean funny like I'm a clown, I amuse you? I make you laugh, I'm here to ****in' amuse you? What do you mean funny, funny how? How am I funny?

    That's the goal! To be entertaining yet informative.
    Well you're on the right track. Take care!

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    Departments can do what they like but my department will not do it.

    Like Fyredup said, ever see a cat skeleton in a tree?

    I would not want to explain to the citizens why my $500,000 ladder truck was used to get a cat out of a tree.... Or why it was delayed to respond to a fire or now it went down for maintenance because of a damn cat..... Or to explain why we have to pay for rabies shots and treatments now because the cat doesn't want to come down and bites or scratches my guys..... Or to explain to the family how their father/husband was such a hero saving a cat out of a tree.

    C'mon, be serious. The only true way to get a cat out of a tree is let be....when it get hungry or feels safe enough, he will come down.

    Otherwise, get the rifle.
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    It is simple as 2 letters, P.R.

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    **sorry, double post from an itchy trigger finger**
    Last edited by Dickey; 03-17-2007 at 10:11 PM.
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    Have you ever seen a cat's skeleton in a tree? It will come down when it's ready to. Maybe the hysterical humans on the ground are the reason it is up there. It's trying to get some peace and quiet!
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    Quote Originally Posted by LVFRExplorer9 View Post
    It is simple as 2 letters, P.R.
    I won't take the risk.

    I think there is more P.R. NOT doing it.
    If my husband got electricuted saving a cat, I would be pretty upset. If my house was on fire and the fire truck that was needed was delayed due to a cat rescue, I would be pretty upset.....you get the picture.
    Jason Knecht
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    We do animal rescues all the time as long as there is minimum risk involved.

    Excellent PR. Makes our customers feel good and hopefully they'll remember that when we need our fire tax renewed (every 3 years). Good ladder training for our younger members. Basically a win-win situation.

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    I think the key word here is that everyone keeps refering to this as animal RESCUE....clearly not a rescue operation....although I'm sure it gave the neighborhood warm fuzzies.... I could have done the same thing with a rock or maybe even better a 10 year old with a bb gun. By the way...power poles, transformers...and the likes can be safely extinguished with dry chems transported in broken streams if applied correctly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    We do animal rescues all the time as long as there is minimum risk involved.

    Excellent PR. Makes our customers feel good and hopefully they'll remember that when we need our fire tax renewed (every 3 years). Good ladder training for our younger members. Basically a win-win situation.
    Devil's advocate here.....

    When you need that new truck, they would say "why? All you do is rescue cats from trees."

    If it works for you, more power to ya!
    Last edited by Dickey; 03-17-2007 at 10:33 PM.
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    I have been involved in 2 animal rescues.

    One was ducklings in a storm sewer. No risk to me and 11 of 12 ducklings were saved and the other went down the lateral never to be seen again. For all I know he went all the way to Jones Island.

    Second was a cat off from a 2 story apartment building roof. His loving master walked onto the balcony and chucked the cat up on to the roof and the cat had no way down. I was fully bunkered with gloves on when I went up the ladder and I called the cat until it came to me and I carried it down the ladder and it still tried to claw me.

    These were both relatively safe "rescues" and that is the extent of the danger I am willing to put myself in for an animal. Frankly I think anyone that puts a ladder up against a power pole to affect an animal rescue is a little soft in the head. Aluminum ladders and high voltage simply do not mix. All it takes is one slip, one false move, and you are making that dreaded door knock visit. Over what? A cat? Nope, I love animals but not that much.

    FyredUp

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    We are not the busiest fire department in the world but we do a tremendous volume of EMS runs for a district of 13,000, so the community sees us responding to enough runs to know that we need and use the apparatus.

    Being there for other things - animal rescues, lift assists, smoke detector battery calls and the like is the little things that we do to help our customers. To us they are customers, as they have a choice every 3 years who provides fire protection when they are asked to renew the fire tax. They know that we will do the extras that maybe the city fire department, who would love to annex the high-value portion of our district will not do. That kind of PR is what we need as at times the city can be very aggressive in terms of annexing parish land.

    We have never had a customer ask us why we are tying up apparatus and manpower on these types of public service calls, but we have had many customers thank us and compliment us on the service that we offer. And yes, that is a very good thing.

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