To the Editor:
What is going on with the fire siren? Its loudness and over-usage has become beyond annoying for those living right downtown. First know that I have nothing but praise and admiration for the job that volunteers firefighters under the leadership of the Fire Chief do anytime of day or night.
In this century the siren seems completely redundant and should be used only as a backup when all other means of alerting the firefighters fail. Although the siren is loud as hell, up to 100 decibels within a couple blocks of the Fire department, it still may not be heard in the Pulp Mill Bottom or up Smoky Hollow inside one’s house with the TV on. In
the middle of the night it is very unlikely to wake up any healthy young firefighter sleeping soundly. Most towns have long ago phased out the siren for the purpose of calling in the first responders and only use it (if at all) for the daily test of the system. This test has forever been the 10 pm one single whistle in Parsons, which by the way has also become fairly erratic of late. Some nights it gets skipped entirely and some others it goes on 6-7 times!
One would think that with so many new modes of communication the siren would seem an inefficient if nostalgic relic! To the contrary in Parsons for over a year now its use has expanded to an elongated ear-splitting tone that goes on & on & on… like it’s the London blitz of WWII, then sometimes 2 minutes later it goes on & on again for..? the all-clear signal I guess? (The other evening the siren went off, no emergency vehicle left, and they turned off the lights and went home!)
It’s the responsibility of all of us to make Parsons a welcoming safe and pleasant place to live and work. This is an important quality of life issue for me and I know that several others share my concerns but also that they are somewhat reluctant to be perceived as criticizing the Fire Dept. That is certainly not the point here. If you feel like commenting on this issue,(hopefully in support but not exclusively) I welcome your comments at SirenBlues478@gmail.com