Watching the story that Glenn Usdin's FireTruckBlog.com has posted you have to wonder if Auburn City Councilor Mike Farrell is in violation of Maine's distracted driving law. Farrell, trying to prove that firefighters are wasting taxpayer's money by joy riding in fire trucks, proves instead that he isn't much of a leader and doesn't have a clue how to present his case to the public.
I say this as one who hates to see government waste and thinks it's a good thing that political leaders stay informed about fire department spending. But just showing video of a fire truck on the road and not providing any context about what they are doing is ridiculous. I would, at least, expect to see a firefighter dropping off his laundry or stopping by the house to say hi to the kids. For all Farrell knew they could have been training a new driver. The assistant chief tells the local newspaper they were checking a route for a mutual aid drill.
In the end it's possible this could turn out to be video of firefighters joy riding. But Mike Farrell failed to prove it to me or anyone else. If you don't want to look foolish doing this sort of thing you better make sure you have the smoking gun. Until then it is probably best to be quiet and keep your home movies off of YouTube.
Mr. Farrell, if you are really interested in cutting spending, one way could be to lower the number of responses. How many calls do the fire department and police department run for car crashes where the driver was distracted?
Maybe, instead of having a member of the City Council who thinks it's okay to show everyone that there is nothing wrong shooting video while driving, Auburn needs a leader who can set a good example.