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Camryn Hansen
Camryn Hansen
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Philadelphia Closes 7 Fire Companies to Save the Budget – Who Will Save our Burning Houses?

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Though Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter did not ultimately succeed in closing 11 of the city’s 54 library branches, today, he closed seven Philadelphia fire companies in a move that he hopes will save the city $10 million a year in overtime pay.

America’s oldest fire company, Engine 8 at 4th and Arch Streets, founded by Benjamin Franklin, was among those the mayor shut down.

Though the seven fire companies were looking to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to save them at the last minute, ruling against the closings, the Court refused to act.

"It’s very bad, lives are in jeopardy right now," said Union President Brian McBride. "There are going to be five fire stations without the ability to put out a fire."

"The city is safe. This plan was done by professionals in the department who have been in burning buildings themselves and developed with their expertise and 100 years of firefighting," Nutter said. -CBS3

Companies Closed:
ENGINE 1 at 711-23 SOUTH BROAD STREET
ENGINE 6 at 2601 BELGRADE STREET
ENGINE 8 at 101-15 NORTH 4TH STREET
ENGINE 14 at 1652-54 FOULKROAD STREET
ENGINE 39 at 6630 RIDGE AVENUE 39
LADDER 1 at 1541-47 PARRISH STREET
LADDER 11 at 1357 SOUTH 12TH STREET

Nutter has assured voters that he will not close any fire houses, and that he will have firefighters in the closed companies reassigned to other ones.

Let’s hope for all our sakes that the mayor is right—or if he’s not, that somebody’s house won’t have to burn down before lawmakers will act to responsibly and adequately protect Philadelphians in the event of a fire.