DC Mayor’s spokesman: ‘previous administration left city unprepared’ and says fire department was ‘neglected’.

Mayor Vince Gray.

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Previous coverage of Chief Ellerbe & the DC Fire & EMS Department

March 8 press conference on recent EMS issues

Chief Ellerbe says ladder trucks not inspected last year because of lack of reserve rigs

Reporter ambushes Deputy Mayor Paul Quander about fleet & ladders

(NOTE: Sorry for three DC stories in a row, but the news keeps coming)

As we reported earlier this evening, WTTG-TV/Fox 5 reporter Paul Wagner is still trying to get Chief Kenneth Ellerbe or Deputy Mayor Paul Quander to talk about the disrepair of the DC Fire & EMS Department fleet. But apparently Wagner staked out the wrong person today. While Ellerbe and Quander aren’t talking, a spokesman for Mayor Vincent Gray is speaking up about the state of the department and confirms it isn’t good. Pedro Ribeiro tells Washington Examiner reporter Alan Blinder it’s not their fault and that this was the mess they inherited from the administration of Mayor Adrian Fenty and Fire Chief Dennis Rubin:

“The previous administration left the city unprepared. … It takes time to turn around a department that was neglected for so long,” said Ribeiro, who noted the agency has ordered or received 45 ambulances since Gray became mayor.

Here’s a little more from Blinder’s article:

D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson said Monday that the DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department suffered an “embarrassment” by being forced to acknowledge it misled city lawmakers last month about the state of its fleet.    “It’s always a concern of mine that the council receive accurate information,” Mendelson said. “It’s an embarrassment to the department that the information they provided turned out to be incorrect.”   

Read entire Washington Examiner article

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