Vandals Steal From Volunteer Fire Department on Christmas Night 12/26/12
CBS 7 News Reporter
December 26, 2012
WEST ODESSA, TX – On Christmas night the West Odessa Volunteer Fire Department received an unpleasant surprise; vandals stole necessary gear and caused extensive damage to equipment.
"The tool box on our big tanker had been opened up… all the connections, wrenches and everything had been pulled out and thrown on the ground," said firefighter Andy Gibson.
Vandals came through their small station, stealing gasoline out of their trucks and turning on a water valve on one of their main fire engines; which completely ruined the vehicle.
"That's bad, it put it out of service," said Gibson.
Now the fire department has an expense they're not able to pay.
"Other fire stations … they pull for $3,000 for a new pump in a heartbeat and not think about it. That's a lot of money, when we get $40,000 a year to operate," said Fire Chief Jimmy Ellis.
The fire chief stated this isn't the first time thieves came through their station.
"These last 6 months has been the worse I've ever seen out here with people stealing fittings off our truck. They've stole fuel…tearing things up," said Ellis.
He stated it sparked feelings of anger, frustration and mostly confusion.
"Why? Why would you do that to something here? I mean you’re not getting anything worth that much, you’re not doing anything but just tearing up property that we use to save lives.” said Ellis. “We’re not trying to hurt anybody out here. If anything we all try to kill ourselves to save somebody and we do it for nothing. So you know, give us a break. Leave the things alone outside."
The West Odessa Fire Department is now trying to come up with a way to pay for the repair.
If you would like to donate to them, call them at (432) 381–3033.