First Responders Go Above and Beyond During Blizzard of ‘16
While most residents were home and warm watching the snow pile up in the front yards as we day-dreamed about not going to school for a week or wondered how to keep kids from going stir crazy, there was a small army of public servants braving the elements and the dangers therein to keep us safe.
Police officers from the 5th District were on the roads during the height of the storm, as well as after the storm, said the Germantown District Commander David Gillespie. “We had the assets from the national guard and some four-wheel drive vehicles.” However, he said that there were times when even the military Humvees would get stuck in the snow as it piled up.
According to Gillespie, “We had our officers, who usually ride alone in patrol cars, double-up with a partner during the storm. And the National Guard vehicles had the capacity to carry a number of officers in those big trucks. If we needed to could get manpower to the scene of an emergency. But, it is times like these that require police and emergency personnel to improvise to get done what needs to get done.”
“At the height of the storm,” he said, “there were times when our officers had to hunker down and stay safe, especially Friday night into Saturday. Conditions were horrendous. It was real bad.”
Gillespie said there was no decrease in police staffing due to the storm, in fact with some officers forced to spend the night on cots in headquarters the 5th District more officers ready to respond than on a normal night.