Non-emergency fêtes not on list for sirens
April 30, 2020
To The Eagle:
I suspect most of us, as I do, tend to judge the severity of an incident involving emergency vehicles by the number of units, the number of flashing lights, and the sound, volume and duration of the sirens. On April 20 and again on April 22, the residents of East Sunny Sands were subject to raids by squadrons of emergency vehicles including at least two from Skamokawa. I doubt an active shooter in our high school would have generated that much audible commotion. Investigation revealed these attacks to be in response to a birthday celebration.
I am not complaining about noise per se. My neighbors will tell you that I make my share as a result of my shop operations. But when sirens arrive I envision dreadful situations such as crime, injury, a health emergency, property loss, etc.
The word from the sheriff's office was that there is no law against what happened. Not so. Google RCW 46.61.035 Authorized Emergency Vehicles. This lists the conditions in which sirens are required or allowed. Birthday celebrations or other non-emergency celebrations are not on the list. Therefore siren use is not authorized.
In the future when fire departments celebrate birthdays, please keep RCW 46.61.035 in mind.