Neighbors demand answers during public safety meeting - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Neighbors demand answers during public safety meeting

(WMC-TV) - Memphis residents demanded answers Monday night during a meeting over the possible closure of a fire station in their neighborhood. The closure could be the result of city budget cuts. Almost 60 people gathered in a North Memphis church for the meeting on public safety.

"This is a poor neighborhood. We have a lot of senior citizens. A lot of our houses are made of wood," said Roberta Mack, who lives in North Memphis. "They will go up like a match box. Therefore we need the fire department in our neighborhood."

Many shared the same concerns as Mack when it comes to talk of closing Fire Station 6. It is a cost saving measure the city delayed until September 1.

"We have children who have asthma attacks. We have elderly who have heart attacks," said Linda Ward, who thinks a fire station nearby can make the difference.

With the city's budget crisis, there is also talk of "brown outs" to save money. A "brown out" would shut down fire stations over 24 hour increments if a department is low on staff.

"No one has said when it will start or if it will start but that is a part that is being discussed," said Tommy Malone, Memphis Firefighters Association.

Many of the people at the meeting will go to city council meetings to make sure council members know how they feel.

The fire department says closing Fire Station 6 was the most prudent decision since there are three other fire stations within a 1.3 mile radius.

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